|The Flash #123 (1961)|
Utilized heavily for over 40 years, it appeared as though DC was ready to officially shelve the multiverse when they launched their "New 52" initiative. The relaunch was designed to simplify DC's history once and for all, making the books more accessible to the elusive "new reader." Then a few months ago DC cancelled a handful of their relaunched titles and announced a second wave of six new releases in their place. One title in particular really caught my eye. It was Earth-2 written by James Robinson and drawn by Nicola Scott.
|Helena Wayne as Robin.|
In order to defeat the soldiers from Apokolips, Superman and Wonder Woman attack the parademons head on while Batman uploads a virus into one of their control towers. Thankfully the virus works, however Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman are all killed in the process!!! Uh, spit take! To make matters worse, Supergirl and Robin enter a portal that unknowingly leads them to Earth-1. You can follow their adventures in World's Finest by Paul Levitz and George Perez.
The book then shifts back to the present and even after five year, the world is still trying to pick up the pieces and rebuild. The parademons are gone but so too are their heroes. But the citizens of Earth-2 have nothing to fear for a new crop of heroes are looming on the horizon. We are briefly introduced to Al Pratt, Alan Scott and Jay Garrick. Do those names sound familiar? It looks like Robinson was putting together a JSA book after all. But this is the New 52, so the heroes are younger and will have updated origins and costumes. And I'll be along for the ride.
|Jay Garrick is in for a big surprise!|
This was a great first issue. Robinson teases you at first. You think you're reading a run of the mill Justice League story, albeit with modified costumes. It all feels familiar. Then he hits you with a major curveball and it becomes painfully obvious that this is not the Earth we're used to. The first half of the book moves at a breakneck pace, focusing exclusively on the final push against the parademons. Once the Trinity falls, things slow down a bit as we're introduced to the books main protagonists. Although they have yet to obtain their powers, Pratt, Scott and Garrick are still intriguing each in their own way, and the final splash page left me hungry for more.
|Earth-2 Supergirl. Soon to be known as Earth-1's Power Girl|
*End of Spoliers*
I was a little hesitant about picking up Earth-2 #1 but I'm glad that I did. My expectations for this one are high and if Robinson's prior work on JSA and Starman are any indicator I have no reason to be worried. I expect Earth-2 to be around for quite some time.