The multiverse has been back for a long time now, and even in the New 52, Earth-2 (and others) still exist. DC’s Next Wave has launched, and Earth-2 takes front and center.

EARTH-2
Writer: James Robinson
Penciller: Nicola Scott
Inker: Trevor Scott
Colorist: Alex Sinclair
Letterer: Dezi Sienty
Editor: Pat McCallum
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $3.99

Previously on Earth-2: Earth-Two first appeared in The Flash #123, and it bridged the gap between the Silver Age characters and those of the Golden Age. The Flash of Two Worlds kicked off a way for DC Comics to keep fans of the original characters happy, while creating opportunities for stories from a multitude of Earths, each a little different from the one most readers were familiar with. While 1985‘s Crisis on Infinite Earths looked to clear the slate and reboot the DCU with only one Earth, one timeline, one history, over time, cracks appeared, and those with the power (and the pen) returned the mutliverse to reality in DC’s 52. With 2011‘s Flashpoint event, fans got a chance to see an alternate timeline once again, but the most recent reboot of the DC universe (The New 52) gives us another chance to explore strange new worlds, full of heroes that are recognizable but different than our own…

BOOM GO THE HEROES

There’s something epic in the way James Robinson draws the reader in with this first issue. While fans enter the book thinking they know what Earth-2 is all about, Robinson instantly changes those beliefs by giving us a look back to the events of five years ago, a time when the Parademons and Steppenwolf used Boom Tubes to attack the Earth. Robinson doesn’t need to spend a lot of time setting up the attack, we’re dropped in the middle of the fight – The Final Fight of Superman, Wonder Woman, and Batman. Batman’s figured out how to defeat the enemy, but it requires him to the ultimate sacrifice, and during the fight, both Wonder Woman and Superman are killed in battle. As each hero falls, and Supergirl and Robin (we know her as The Huntress) make their way through an open portal, the world is changed. The heroes are gone, and a very different Earth remains.

When DC fans first learned of the new Earth-2, they were teased that James Robinson would be writing a JSA series, and many were then upset over the announcement that he would be writing Earth-2 that featured Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman on the cover. After reading this first issue, it’s clear that Robinson IS writing the JSA. During the final fight, fans are introduced to Sergeant Al Pratt (The Atom), Alan Scott (Green Lantern), and by issue’s end Jay Garrick, who will become The Flash. We aren’t seeing a story about The Trinity, we’re seeing the origins of the Justice Society of America, and it unfolds brilliantly.

THE ART OF WAR

While Earth-2 has a Teen rating, I’m glad Nicola Scott didn’t hold completely back on the big battles. Though the blood on panel is minimal, the spear that pierces Wonder Woman, and the method the Parademons take down Superman are shocking and intense. What makes these moments even more interesting from the art perspective is that Scott didn’t resort to full page panels for dramatic effect. The fact that Superman’s death is reduced to one-quarter of the page, is visually telling the reader that the heroes deaths aren’t the story – the aftermath is. It’s wonderfully done and I loved every panel.


BOTTOM LINE: I’M EXCITED

I was very hesitant about the Next Wave, but this first issue entertained me to no end. The story is a great way to introduce the reason for the JSA, and it keeps the story set in a modern time. I was hoping to see some WWII tales, but I’m on board with what plays out here. Unlike the last time Robinson took on the JSA, I’m hoping he keeps the team roster simple, doesn’t go too far off the deep end, and delivers a tale that is interesting as this first chapter. I’m ready for issue two, and I’m giving Earth-2 4.5 out of 5 Stars.

Rating: ★★★★½

 

The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

Previous post

Major Spoilers Question Of The Day: Zip Zero Nada Edición

Next post

REVIEW: Worlds’ Finest #1

6 Comments

  1. TaZ
    May 6, 2012 at 5:14 pm — Reply

    I was really impressed with this issue. If you have relaunched the Silver Age heroes, why not the Golden Age? Makes sense although there’s probably a lot of folks out there that are crying over the loss of Garrick’s lightning bolt sweatshirt and Alan Scott’s funky footware. I checked out the previews of the next two issues over at dccomics.com and saw another shot of Jay Garrick’s new Flash costume and the preview of Alan Scott as this earth’s Green Lantern. One small detail of Alan Scott was left in that I liked. Alan’s Power Ring in the cover shot is still on his left hand. GL Corps all have rings on their right had (or on something approaching a hand) and Alan Scott has been a “leftie” since the Golden Age. Bless them for small details. The jury is still out on what appears to be a cross between the Alex Ross GL Armor and a GL Corps uniform until we get more detail. But ANYTHING is better than him looking like a green traffic light as in the end of the old JSA series. Great art and DC keeping the fact that all of the “Big Three” are killed in the first of this series made it a real turn.

  2. Lee Goldberg
    May 6, 2012 at 5:46 pm — Reply

    In one issue, with little-to-no no set-up or backstory, I already felt more invested and interested in this version of the Trinity (especially Superman, who on this earth actually retains the selflessness and nobility that is so lacking in his new “Earth 1” version) and their world than I did after the establishing first 6 issues of Justice League of America.

  3. Noobian74
    May 8, 2012 at 11:21 am — Reply

    Read it. Liked it. Waiting for more.

    It set up the new universe nicely. Want to see how a world without the Trinity is treated.

    • Trey
      May 25, 2012 at 1:50 pm — Reply

      They did that though. It was called 52.

      I don’t know. I always get irked when Superman gets written out of a story instead of trying to cope with his powers. Except they usually write about characters will the same level of power anyway. I’m still a bit confused as to what’s going on with the World’s Finest. They were in Earth-2 but are now in Earth 1? I thought this series was going to be about Earth 2?

  4. Nightwing
    June 7, 2012 at 10:11 am — Reply

    I never read anything concerning Earth 2, but the concept has always been very appealing to me. Despite this, I didn’t order any issue of Earth 2 so far, for 2 reasons:
    1) I’m a big fan of Grifter. If the 6 new series DC recently launched push Grifter nearer to the bottom of the sales chart, this series could be cancelled: if so, at least I won’t feel guilty for this.
    2) I’ve seen the previews, and it seems that Earth 2 will be like Image first comics: 100 % action, 0 % story.
    Anyway, I will keep an eye on Earth 2 in the next months, and if I see more interesting previews, then I could give it a try.

  5. Nightwing
    June 7, 2012 at 10:17 am — Reply

    P.S.: Of course, your positive review could help me change my mind.

You know you have something to say, say it in the comment section