Review: Justice League #22

[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

Writer: James Tynion IV

Artist: Francis Manapul

Letters: Tom Napolitano

 

Summary

The Multiverse is teetering on the brink, and Lex Luthor’s Legion of Doom is poised for victory. But as the combined intellects of Brainiac and the world’s smartest man make their move toward conquering the keys to the sixth dimension, a much bigger power grows on the horizon. At last, the final form of Perpetua takes her shape, and the DCU will never be the same again!

 

Positives

Once again we have the League mostly absent from their own book (except Mera, Starman, and Jarro), while the issue is retitled Legion of Doom. However, this is somewhat misleading, as Luthor’s team only makes a brief appearance in the issue themselves. Instead what we get is an origin story.

But this is not just the any origin story, but the origin story. We finally see the story behind the DC Multiverse’s origin as envisioned by Scott Snyder and James Tynion IV, and its creator, Perpetua – plus the origin of her three children: the Monitor, the Anti-Monitor, and the World Forger – and even the Source Wall.

Luckily, in an issue that reveals such a vital chunk of DC’s cosmology, Tynion is on hand as guest writer. Snyder has given us an amazingly complex and layered Multiverse, but it can be hard for readers to comprehend all that he’s trying to get across. Tynion has a talent for taking these concepts and helping the reader wrap their heads around them. Snyder and Tynion have a wonderfully complementary writing partnership, which is providing a better story than we might have got from either of them alone.

I also like that this explanation of the DC cosmology is a deeper layer than all previous iterations, rather than another rewrite overtop of earlier explanations. As such, it affirms that all other versions of the multiverse, going back to the Silver Age Multiverse with infinite Earths. The story ends with the Multiverse’s very first reality reboot (chronological) that establishes the infinite Earths, and established the Monitor and Anti-Monitor the versions we first met in Crisis On Infinite Earths.

It’s also interesting that despite being the villains of the title, the Legion of Doom shows up to save the world – and they do so in the most outrageous method possible. To stop Mxyzptlk from unwriting the world, they sic Bat-Mite on him. I like that DC is becoming more willing in recent years to reincorporate some of their sillier concepts of earlier eras. They don’t come much sillier than the Mite, who appears in all his Silver Age glory.

 

Negatives

What could I criticize about an issue that gives us a new understanding of the Multiverse, while reaffirming a lot of classic DC history? Well, I could complain that the League is pretty much absent for the issue. However, it does cover material that is essential to the readers’ understanding of the story, and with two issues a month, the occasional issue without the main characters isn’t that much of an inconvenience.

 

Verdict

With past issues, I wasn’t sure where the story was headed, but the since the story was entertaining, I was happy to just sit back and see where it was heading. But as the story is taking shape, it’s getting more fun, and my eagerness for each new chapter is steadily increasing.

 

 

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Derek McNeil

I have been an avid reader of DC Comics since the early 70s. My earliest exposure was to Batman and Superman comics, Batman (Adam West) reruns, and watching the Super-Friends every Saturday morning.