[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Tom King
Artist: Mitch Gerads
Reviewed By: Derek McNeil
This issue, it’s back to Apokolips—and a return to war. Scott Free is engaged in a bloody battle against Darkseid’s forces, this time without Barda by his side—because her hands are full, thanks to a domestic situation at home. With his attention split by his concerns for his wife’s commitments back on Earth, can Mister Miracle hold his own against the minions of darkness?
Scott and Barda are struggling to adapt to their duties as new parents while also leading New Genesis’ war against Apokolips. Their solution for the time being is to trade off. One stays on Earth with baby Jacob, while the other wages war on Darkseid’s forces – the next day they switch.
There is a surreal juxtaposition of the horrors of war with the very mundane calls between Scott and Barda. They talk about the baby, the job, doctors appointments, etc.
Scott and Barda have Funky Flashman helping them take care of Jacob, which seems unlikely, but it allows for some inspired moments. Jack Kirby based Funky on Stan Lee, a fact King hints at by having him exclaim Lee’s catchphrase, “Excelsior!” And Funky calls Jacob “Jack” and insists, “He’s the king!” – obviously referring to Jack Kirby.
And Funky’s presence adds a lot of humour as well. For example, Scott and Funky’s argument over whether Jacob should have a toy Batman in his crib leads Scott to state that “Batman kills babies.”
Speaking of this Batman toy, how can a grown adult in the DCU have had a toy Batman as a child? Bruce Wayne would not have embarked on his Batman career yet when Funky was still a kid.
Also, Darkseid’s presence in this series doesn’t seem to jibe with his appearances in Wonder Woman, or how he will appear in the Justice League Odyssey title.
And is King dropping us a hint when Scott talks with an unnamed woman at the park? Scott states about Jacob, “I think it’s tough. To leave him.” She responds “I know how that is. You get stuck in these things. It’s so hard to get out.” This seems to be another hint that Scott is trapped in a false reality, and that Jacob is the bait that keeps him in the trap.
I can’t find much to fault about this series other than the maddening wait between issues. The story is gripping, which makes it hard to be patient for the next installment.
King and Gerad’s Mister Miracle is one of finest books in DC’s lineup, and that’s saying something given the high quality of titles DC has been producing since the Rebirth relaunch. Mister Miracle goes to the very top of my to-read pile whenever a new issue comes out.