Story: Frank Miller, Brian Azzarello
Art: Andy Kubert, Klaus Janson
Colors: Brad Anderson
What They Say:
The Dark Knight saga continues as Carrie Kelly gets caught…that is, she finds herself…she gets into—well, you’re just going to have to read it yourself.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The Dark Knight saga is one that has so much history behind it that one can easily imagine some brilliant papers being written over the years to dissect it all and really get at it. More words have been written about the prior works, and these new ones, than make up the books themselves and all that went into it. It’s a testament to the themes, ideas, and emotions that they convey and how we all interpret it all in so many different ways. What really compels, however, is that we’re so fully able to get into the minds of these characters while having so little truly said that is the most engaging. This is made even more so in the backup mini story here involving Wonder Woman and her daughter Lara, which echoes Diana’s own upbringing and what she went through with Hippolyta.
The main book runs two different stories here that are going to connect in some really brutal ways soon. The primary story picks up where we left off with Carrie, being dragged out of the suit and the scene the last time around, ranting on about how Bruce Wayne is dead. There’s some wonderfully raw material with this as presented both in words and art to give it real impact, especially since a lot of what comes afterwards for a good chunk of it is a very subdued Carrie, at first being silent and watching and then revealing her truth of what happened to Bruce. The somber aspect of it is fantastic, but it’s only a shade of the story at hand. That it digs into Bruce so well in his final moments really says a lot, though you have to take it at face value at first because of the way the layers are peeled back.
Carrie gets to shine on the action side here as well as we see her beautifully planned escape, making it clear that everything that she did to get to the Commissioner and tell her the tale is all part of the plan. Carrie really does have some of that classic Robin element about her as he goes through the escape, feeling alive like in no other way, and Kubert and Jason really given it some fantastic scale and impact both with the ride that she has to get out of there and just the way the chase unfolds. It’s fun, over the top, and truly your prime example of how Miller operates in designing big set pieces like this.
The other story here draws in from the backup story the last time around with Ray as he’s working closely with Lara to help the Kandorians. This comes with help from inside there with Baal and that dynamic introduces some curious tension, particularly since Lara is so otherworldly compared to both of them in her interactions. I’ve long liked Ray and always love when they let him get all sciencey on things, so there’s a lot to like here with how he works through the problem and solves it, only to realize what it is he’s truly done. I do feel like I’m missing a few steps from the story here with what happened in the past that clicks for him, but the end result of a thousand Kandorians now back to normal size on Earth and part of a mad cult is a disturbingly beautiful sequence that left me craving a lot more of this book right away.
This series is definitely shaping up into something strong and engaging on just about all levels with what it wants to do. I can see the potential for a lot of dissection once all is said and done and we get the full view of the twists, turns, and truths. This issue puts a lot on the table with the Kandorians, Lara and what Carrie is up to and while it reveals a lot it feels like it’s just being viewed from an angle that doesn’t give us real answers. Which is great because I want to be surprised by each new reveal that happens rather than seeing it a mile away. The backup book here is solid as we get some good time between Lara and Diana that makes it clear where the two are in their current situation and how that’s going to likely factor into their expected fight later in the run. While I’m still not thrilled about the price tag on this book, it is fully worth it and I can’t wait for more.
Age Rating: 15+
Released By: DC Comics via ComiXology
Release Date: December 23rd, 2015