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Subj: Worlds End #11 - The Miracle Comes.
Posted: Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 06:59:12 am CST (Viewed 758 times)
Weekly serials in comics demand a great deal of time, energy, and material in order to sustain both reader interest and any degree of quality to the product, so with that in mind DC comics' World's End series has a great deal ahead of it - another near Forty issues in fact. Issue #11 and we have a slightly baffling table of contents within which, while readable and pacy, also come off as somewhat inexplicable.
So what about issue #11? A quick breakdown:
As part of a handchosen squad sent off into space to delay/stop Apokolips' approach Mister Miracle uses his knowledge of this world and heads straight for the planets core, where he finds his 'father' Darkseid imprisoned and apparently meditating. Miracle is angry at father for his lack of paternal interest, but as events unfold we see that the God has been manipulating the overly emotional Miracle in order to free him... to which this reader is left bewildered - When and how did Darkseid become a prisoner in his own planet?
But never mind, Big Barda has turned traitor and allied herself back with Darkseid and in response Mr Miracle turns to Fury, herself trained by Barda and having defected the the side of good... though for reasons not made entirely clear. Writers Daniel Wilson, Mike Johnson & Marguerite Bennet are clearly rearranging accepted New God mythos by substituting the traditional Barda/Miracle couple for a Fury/Miracle partnership, one modelled on Teacher/Student lines. An unknown quantity as yet Fury's rehabilitation and integration back into a civil society appears to be becoming the responsibility of Mr Miracle, which while it will not please Jack Kirby purists does at least open doors to some fresh possibilities.
Ambitions of any retreat or confrontation by the duo are quickly quashed as Darkseid's ovrwhelming power brushes aside their efforts and in a neat show of his authority forces them to surrender themselves, and in Fury's case turn over to to his will once more if she wants to live.
It is difficult as yet to feel much of anything for Wonder Woman's corrupted daughter. So little real attention has been given to her as a character that insight into her true self is left for the reader to imagine, as so far the writers have not yet explored who and what she is. This issues tale does begin to add some light to her recent actions but like virtually every other character within this book the motivations are left unclear and actions made without any convincing conviction. Fury was trained by her father on Apokolips, for an unspecified length of time, and from what little we can glean has absolutly no experience of anything but Apokolips. Remarkably then the ease by which she rejects that indoctrination to embrace her mothers home comes with very little hesitation or thought from her.
As she paces the halls of the Furies on Apokolips her allegiance appears undecided, when quite unexpectdly from out from the shadows steps Terry Sloan. Sloan testing her loyalties and finding apparent hostility to the earth's cause is a fine element as it does succeed in giving the audience the impression of her having fallen in line, out of fear and respect for Darkseid, but as an imprisoned Mister Miracle despairs at the collapse of his hopes and any chance of rescue in tears Fury to the rescue!
Is this Sloan's doing? Miracle not surprisinglly is unwilling to trust her, and here then the theme of this particular installment of Worlds End becomes clear - loyalty and trust put to the test. A test Fury is all too willing to take under Mr Miracle's skepticism. Freeing him he begrudgingly accepts the notion that perhaps he can still have faith in people, and here then Fury is in turn teaching him, by showing her faith in him and proving she had not abandoned him. As a character journey then Fury's works quite well for this issue up to a point. If we accept that her epithany and subsequent rejection of Apokolips is hr mothers nature asserting itself within her the dubiousness of the presentation in previous issues can be taken in a more positive light. Steppenwolf took her to Apokolips at a young age and she had nev,r known anything else but indoctrination to Darkseid's cause. At some point in the recent past Mister Miracle and Barda turned her and she latterly earns a purge thanks to Miracle's Mother Box a couple or so issues ago.
The logic and presentation is not at all satisfactory in any of this, but at least there is a sort of logic to her actions at least. Wonder Woman's daughter finally tapping into her mothers heritage and wisdom.
As she and Mister Miracle run through corridors to find the exit to the surface Fury directs them to an antechamber instead, where they spy on Darkseid and in a surprising twist he is giving audience to... Terry Sloan!? The genocidal ex-hero of Earth-2, killer of millions during the war. And as the shocked Fury and Miracle witness that is the very least of it.
Quite why Darkseid should shower a lowly mortal like Sloan with such quality time and attention is unclear, but as previously suggested we learn that Sloan is indeed not a native to Earth-2, he had made a secret deal with Darkseid in which the God would target Earth-2 rather than Sloan's native earth. More than that the truth as to why Apokolips is here to feed on earth-2 is given further dimension as a stunned Mister Miracle listens to the admission from Sloan that it is here due to a treaty with New Genesis which gives Apokolips freedom to feed on earth in return for a vow not to feed elsewhere. In other worlds Earth-2 is a tactical sacrificial gesture in a game of Gods which no one earth could hope to comprehend.
All of this is a neat reveal, very dramatic, but HOW would Sloan come to possess such sensitive information?! On the face of it it makes no sense. As we close the issue the purpose of this ordeal is very evident to see as we watch the penitent Mr Miracle disown New Genesis for this immoral gesture and vow to ally himself with the struggling earth to save billions. "I will be their Miracle". Which in the end makes the issue a satisfying and worthwhile piece, a story with a moral purpose to it.
Flawed as a project from the start, with characters rewritten or misunderstood by these newcomer writers, and yet Worlds End is still a book which is far from truly poor. This chapter stands out for the easy on the eye visuals from Tony McDaniel and Paulo Siqquera and the focus on Fury's journey from despicable adversary to figure of hope. Whether it is redemption she is pursuing or simply personal freedom her journey starts right here... as in a sense does the mysterious Mister Miracle's.
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