Justice League Dark #1
By Hervé St-Louis
Oct 4, 2011 - 22:02
Publisher(s): DC Comics
Writer(s): Peter Milligan
Penciller(s): Mikel Janin
Inker(s): Mikel Janin
Colourist(s): Ulises Arreola
Letterer(s): Rob Leigh
Cover Artist(s): Sook
The Enchantress has spun a threat that the Justice League cannot possibly defeat and it’s up to Madame Zanadu and a team of magically powered beings to go in places where the Justice league can’t possibly go. But has Madame Zanadu played one too many cards in an attempt to stop the Enchantress?
I like the premise of a magical Justice League. I like how DC Comics is also cashing on a name that means something to most readers instead of using the name Shadowpact which is what this series is really about. However, instead of just assembling a bunch of magical heroes, DC Comics is actually pulling in the big guns minus the Phantom Stranger and the Spectre. With John Constantine, Zatanna, Shade the Changing Man and Madame Xanadu, we have a core Vertigo-like cast that will bring that darker part of the DC Comics universe closer to the main one.
Milligan has been a staple of Vertigo Comics for a while. The story is still shrouded in mystery, but so far it works. There is some hint of the madness one feels in a Vertigo book using mainstream comic book characters in a different setting. This is a feeling I had not had in a long time, not having read a Vertigo book in a while. There is a discourse, but Superman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg are just passengers that just don’t get the scope of the threat they are dealing with and only the magical DC Comics characters can hope to deal with this. I didn’t feel that for the Batman scene in the book. It would seem that Batman would have been at home in this fantasy world threat. But what I did like was how he was stopped from interfering by Zatanna.
Speaking of which, the Zatanna in this book is not the confident magical mistress of old. Here, she is very sure about her prowess, but people around her are less trusting. She comes off more like a junior super heroine than an established one. I’m not too familiar with Madame Zanadu, so I couldn’t figure out exactly how much she affected the book although she was kind of always not too far around. It was an odd feeling, especially given the last page of the book. She was there, but wasn’t at the same time.
Janin makes everyone he draws beautiful, unless they are from the Justice League. They looked off and not their natural super heroic posture. Yet, on every non super hero scene, Janin rendered a varied and interesting universe. His women minus Wonder Woman are all beautiful.
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