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Subj: Earth-2 #28 - Off The Rails.
Posted: Fri Nov 07, 2014 at 09:04:16 am CST (Viewed 899 times)
To list the creative team on the latest issue of Earth-2 would require more time and effort than I can adequately muster, leave it to say that between Writers and artists the number tallies to an incredible EIGHT contributors alone.
Eight. Eight to write/draw a standard size unremarkable production entry in the Earth-2 ongoing series. I would be tempted to deliver a couple of hundred further words on just how contemptuous and offensive this particular issue is to its audience, but the truth is this book merely takes its place as being one more entry in the field of mediocrity and contempt the publisher increasingly serves its audience today. For the reality is if you want an Earth-2 book with the regular cast within it and action/adventure, then the weekly exploitation exercise titled World's End is presently where it's all at... As the ongoing regular Earth-2 series has just been relegated to being a lowly satellite book to that series, a dumping ground for pure unashamed filler.
Issue #28 fills its page count by focusing totally on the origins of the Four Furies of Apokolips, these being a quartet of largely generic 'Horsemen of the Apocalyse' working as the villainous foils in Worlds End. The obvious caveat in this statement is that if you aren't reading the World's End series, and I expect many are not, then this issue of Earth-2 will not only baffle and lose you but will leave you thoroughly cheated. Without a doubt you will feel cheated, and understandably offended perhaps. To make the superfluous nature of the four tales within worse is that they even go directly against one of the foundation stones of the reinvented universe of Earth-2 - namely the express editorial mandate to avoid the duplication of existing Earth-1 characters. So as we are presented with an antholgy of sorts featuring the origins of the four Horsemen of Apokolips we meet an Earth-2 Lobo, a Tamaranean who may well be Starfire, a Mongul and Warworld identical to the Superman/Green Lantern versions, and a visit to Mars and its green Martians. In a further puzzling move there is the inference that Apokolips is a world inhabiting the Earth-2 universe, a detail which flies against everything established thus far about the Fourth World.
So, to sum up and take stock of this months installment: We have none of the regular cast of Earth-2. Four uninteresting incidental characters belonging to the Worlds End series. Four genric origin stories of four victims and miscreants opting to become even more soulless and nasty. And 20 pages of a pick n' mix array of artists plying their daily crust and moving on...
In the end here is a book which, like so many others right now, does DC Comics no favors at all. Utterly without ambition, without worth, and without shame. A betrayal of the previous high standards and quality that earned the title its dedicated fanbase.
Amidst the determination that Earth-2 must forever be defined by its unending war against the forces of Apokolips there appears to have been a breakdown in editorial control. According to this issue and the ongoing World's End storyline Apokolips has been making its way to Earth, from where is unclear, but along the way it visits Czarnia and here Mars. Since the narrative seems to be implying Apokolips has been taking a leisurely route, with time for conquest along the way, crushing the Martian society and producing a child who would become a Horseman would surely take some time... but are we to be expected that Apokolips, and no less than Darkseid himself, would be satisfied with such a cavalier crusade? Is this not a planet more concerned with waging war on the Multiverse than obsessing over just one of those universe's and a small planet within called Earth?
There is a very apparent disconnect between the events seen here and those seen elsewhere in the DC Universe where the New Gods are concerned, and combined with the slipping standards of Earth-2 the results are a book which fails to follow the high standards set up in its first year of publication...
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