Sunday, November 22, 2015

Earth 2: Society #5 (HERE BE SPOILERS!)

Unfortunately, I have to say I'm done now.

I've complained in previous reviews that I'm pretty confused about the overarching story that Wilson is (allegedly) telling.  But, the last straw for me is really that Wilson seems to be changing everyone's characterization willy-nilly to fit this (still-unclear) story.

Most egregiously, Flash is shown as a spoiled brat and reluctant hero.  I would be OK if Wilson were telling a story where Flash couldn't handle the pressure anymore.  After all, we learn that he spent 30 days in constant motion, helping to move supplies around New Earth 2 to build the cities after planetfall.  But, Wilson isn't telling that story.  Instead, he shows Flash as reluctant to help.  It's the exact opposite of the Jay Garrick that we saw in the first series.  That Jay was often the only one still trying to win when the odds seemed overwhelming to everyone else.  To make matters worse, Wilson has Flash just suddenly change this characterization, deciding to redeem himself and save a crashing Overwatch-One with no explanation for why he had the change of heart.

Moreover, we learn that Jimmy Olsen is the Big Bad, the man behind Anarky.  He's decided that he's a god and, for some reason, he stole the Source Vault and wants to activate it.  Again, I could see how Jimmy get here, given that he's come to possess so much power (via his merger with the Mother Box) in such a little time.  It makes sense that he might lose touch with reality.  But, Wilson doesn't actually show us this evolution; Jimmy is just the bad guy now and we're supposed to go with it.

Even Wilson's characterization of Batman is odd.  He's arrogant and judgmental, which would totally if he were still Thomas Wayne.  But, he's not.  He's Dick Grayson.  It's almost like Wilson forgot that.

In other words, I hung in there through "Earth 2:  World's End" and "Convergence" because I had hopes that this series would return to letting us get to know the characters.  I longed for the great first few issues of "Earth 2," where we were introduced to them.  But, everything went off the rails with the Darkseid War and we never really returned.  Wilson's scattered storytelling and bizarre characterizations makes these new issues difficult to read, let alone enjoy.  In fact, I'm only giving this issue two stars for Jimenez's art and Sachez's beautiful colors, particularly on the Batsuit.

[Sigh.]  Good-bye, New Earth 2.  Hopefully we'll have a reason to visit later.

** (two of five stars)

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