[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: James Tynion IV
Pencils: Alvaro Martínez Bueno
Inks: Raul Fernandez
Colors: Brad Anderson
Letters: Rob Leigh
Plagued by a rash of otherworldly resurrections, the new JLD team begins scouring the shadowy corners of the DCU looking for leads. Turns out, this latest mystery ties back to the Tree of Wonder, last seen laying down roots in JUSTICE LEAGUE: NO JUSTICE—and it bears poisoned fruit to boot. The Tree serves as a doorway from the Realm of Magic to our world, and the Upside Down Man is just the first of many all-powerful mystic entities looking for a new haunt. It’s gonna take a major twist of fate for our heroes to get out of this one…
Once again I am just blown away by the art in this book. There are so many different styles, colors and tones at play here. Its almost as if the art is showing readers where magic lies and where it has been sucked from the world or is absent. The horrifying monsters in the first fight scene, the Tree of Wonder, the magical artifacts, and Dr. Fate himself all have so much vibrancy in them as thats where magic still lies. In the world of the Upsidedown Man, the dark forest, and the Tower of Fate, however, it appears dark, as if the magic has been sealed off. It is truly a great technique in visual storytelling.
I think Justice League Dark will truly be the book that allows James Tynion IV to come into his own as a writer. This simultaneously dark, magical and mysterious place seems to be Tynion’s home and I am so excited to see where he takes the story. It was so nice to see an extended scene with Dr. Fate, because that has not happened in awhile, and Tynion’s tone felt extremely authentic to me. They have also done a great job of splitting time between the characters for the most part, and I hope that continues.
The book has managed to stay light at times while truly scaring me at other times. Hecate and the Upsidedown man are terrifying villains and just like a horror movie, I am on the edge of my seat when I read this book.
Once again, the book was very narration heavy, but I understand that Tynion has a lot of new magic concepts to explain. I hope he is able to work it out soon though so the comic doesn’t get too bogged down in exposition. I would also like Man-Bat and Detective Chimp to be used as more than comedic relief, but I understand their focus might come later.
For anyone that like a little scare in their comics, I fully recommend this read. Once it gets over the hump of exposition, we might be in for a golden age of Justice League Dark.