[Editor’s note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Bryan Hitch
Artists: Tom Derenick, Andy Owens, Scott Hanna, Trevor Scott
“Reborn”! In this issue, an ancient cosmic evil is revived on Earth – a threat that once took the combined Green Lantern Corps to defeat many millennia ago. Now, how can six heroes and two Green Lanterns possibly put this cosmic genie back into its proverbial bottle?
There are two stories being told in this issue. In the main story, the League fights a resurrected villain, a cosmic threat called Shirak. In the other, Batman has a conversation with Molly, also known as the Keeper, a villain the League faced earlier in the series. The second is the much more interesting story.
Molly tells Batman that the universe has followed a cyclical pattern of death and resurrection. She makes references to “the Crisis, Flashpoint, Rebirths”, cluing the readers into the fact that she is talking about previous DC events, including the most recent Rebirth storyline.
She tells Batman that something dark is coming, something destructive and evil that has shaped human affairs to its purpose. This is also the reason that Earth and the human race seem to be the center of events in the DC Universe.
Batman rejects Molly’s deterministic view of events and states his belief that who the League are and what they do makes a difference. This is also a sentiment echoed by Green Lantern Simon Baz during the League’s fight against Shirak. Simon tells why the League continues to fight against foes like Shirak, “Every day we fight for something, for someone. We fight evil, we fight terror, we struggle against fears, our own and others. We are the dim light in the great darkness. We are the Justice League.
Unfortunately, Shirak, the villain of the issue, seems to be a rather bland and cookie-cutter cosmic threat. The idea that he was an ancient threat that had previously been destroyed by the Green Lantern Corps was an interesting angle, but there seemed to be little about Shirak himself that seemed terribly terrifying or unique. The League deals with cosmic threats like him by the dozen.
It was also disappointing to see what little use new Leaguer Mera was put to this issue. After the build up about how formidable she is last issue, she barely does anything in this fight against a cosmic level threat. In fact, she barely has any dialogue in the issue.
In fact, none of the Leaguers other than Simon do much in the fight. The fight itself doesn’t actually take that long, considering how many pages are spent on Batman and Molly’s tangential conversation. For all the build up about what a major threat Shirak was, there wasn’t much of a fight required to take him down.
I found this issue to be a mixed bag. The most interesting part was the conversation between Batman and Molly, and the possible Rebirth hints being dropped. But other than a shining moment for Simon, the fight against Shirak was rather forgettable.