Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Blackest Night#7 (of 8) - A Review

Blackest Night #7 (of 8)

Publisher DC

Writer Geoff Johns

Pencils Ivan Reis

Inks Oclair Albert & JoePrado

Colors Alex Sinclair

I was looking forward to reading this issue a lot. Once I got into a series like this I actually ignore news site stories about the series and all the rest of the internet chatter because I want to experience it myself. I enjoy trying to recapture the feeling I had as a kid when you picked up the next issue of a comic with no clue about what was coming next.

This book met my expectations and then some. The story starts with Nekron menacing one of the Guardians and in fact taunting him as to the fact that they guard the universe but never actually live in it. We then break into the Rainbow Corps going into action. In the span of one issue Johns squeezes in action from almost every corner and manages to give quality screen time to a ton of characters.

It is a testament to Johns’ skill in that he puts in moments for Lex Luthor, the Scarecrow, Mera, Wonder Woman, the Atom, Ganthet, Larfreeze, Black Lantern Air Wave, the cavalry of Rainbow Lanterns headed up by Guy Gardner and more.
Each moment is given its due and that is because of Ivan Reis and inkers Oclair Albert and Joe Prado. I’d be remiss if I did not mention colorist Alex Sinclair as every page is a masterpiece of matching the color to the story and with a rainbow of corps it was a heck of a lot of work.
Ivan is being asked to do George Perez type of crowd scene by way of the Neal Adams style of art. What an amazing job. Ivan Reis is the number one super hero pencil artist in the business right now. We have had times when it was Jack Kirby, Curt Swan, Neal Adams, George Perez, Bryan Hitch and others have held that torch on occasion, but with Blackest Night Ivan is the new king of the hill. Panel designs, layouts, expressions, crowd scenes, close ups, camera angles, emotions, you name it and Ivan does it and does is in spectacular fashion. In reading the book I was catapulted along at a high rate of speed as I wanted to see what happened next, but at the same time I slowed down to enjoy every page. I want the Absolute to be able to really enjoy this work.

This issues we find out another secret the Guardians had been hiding and that is The Entity, which is the living light bestowed on the Universe (i.e. God) is hidden on Earth and life began on Earth. Nekron’s goal is to kill the white light of the Entity. Now why this type of comic book convention smacks of the same arrogance that middle age man had when he thought the sun and universe revolved around Earth, it works as a comic book convention.

I loved the twist ending, which I will not spoil and look forward to next month’s wrap of Blackest Night.

Geoff Johns has gotten himself that seminal moment in his career. Johns has always been a good to great writer but was great at telling us good stories about usually DC characters. There are multiple runs on his books that I would be happy to own on my bookshelf, but until Blackest Night he did not have that one event that was all his that put his stamp on something, that seminal moment. Add that into his new role at DC and you can equate Johns to being the new Stan Lee/ Julie Schwartz for the DCU, just in multi-media.

I know I skimmed saying what this book was about, but again I’m not looking to take away from someone else reading this before they read the book. Needless to say it is all out action with the Rainbow Corps versus Nekron with the Guardians biggest secret being discovered and a good logical twist as to how this issue ended.

Overall Grade A – Story and art, super hero comics at their best.

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