Saturday, 2 December 2017

Dark Nights: Metal #1 Review (Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo)

Choo-choo, all aboard the stupid train to HotMessville! Celebrated New 52 Batman creative team Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo – or “Doom Commander” and “Pain Bringer” as they’ve bizarrely nicknamed themselves here like a pair of spergy ‘tards! - reunite for the sprawling event, Dark Nights: Metal. Unfortunately the low quality that plagued the tail end of their New 52 run hasn’t improved – Dark Nights: Metal #1 is rubbish! 

Maybe it’s my fault for not reading the two issues preceding this (The Forge and The Casting) but, dagnamit, the cover says #1 so this should be a logical jumping-on point! I couldn’t follow what the hell that opening scene was though. The Justice League are gladiators in some space arena lorded over by Mongul. Toyman is his prisoner for some reason. Robots fight the JL, then they’re being controlled by the JL before combining into a Power Rangers-esque Megazord. Wha…? I think this comic is Snyder coming out as a huge Michael Bay fan – it reads at that level of intelligence.

Then the free-for-all of nonsense comes thick - and this comic is definitely thick - and fast. A mountain appears out of nowhere in Gotham. As they do. Now here’s a map of the Multiverse! Here’s Neil Gaiman’s Sandman! And did someone say Hawkman? (NO! No-one ever wants to read about Hawkman - stop trying to make him a thing! Don’t bring him back to life!) There’s no story, just a series of confusing, incoherent and unconnected scenes. And the thing is, despite all these references and allusions to complex storytelling, it looks overall like such a generic storyline boiling down simply to superheroes vs. supervillains.

I like Doom Commander’s ambitious storytelling - even some of the silliness, despite being utterly confusing - and Pain Bringer’s art is as awesome to see as ever. Despite this messy first issue, there are plenty more to go so that it could turn out to be awesome, or at least contain some crazy cool moments to make it worth reading. But I definitely wasn’t impressed with Dark Nights: Metal #1 and can easily wait for the collected edition to eventually rock up to find out. Like Michael Bay’s movies, this comic was overstuffed with flashy dumbness, little substance and superficial fan service. 

It’s getting harder and harder to remember what a good Scott Snyder comic looked like…

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