So begins the latest Crisis event comic line from DC. This one will focus on a crisis often overlooked in comics – the eternal crisis. Superheroes have always been larger than life super beings with some sort of super gift that made them great. We follow them as they fight evil and often have some sort of internal struggle as they move through their titles. What is often ignored is, while they are doing all these magnificent tasks, we never stop to ask, what is the toll of such feats? What wear and tear does this put on a superheroes psyche? What happens when it’s too much?
This 9-issue story arc looks to go into these stories. The first issue sets up some of these questions with lesser heroes but may in fact delve into the questions when they involve the likes of the Trinity – Superman, Wonder Woman and Batman.
To put the opening events of this issue into context, imagine you created a sanctuary for Veterans that have suffered more trauma than they can handle. A special home is built for them to protect them, a place isolated from the rest of the world so they can have peace and rebuild themselves. Now imagine hearing on the news that the entire facility was wiped out. Every patient – dead. The weight this would put on the Trinity would be overwhelming. Superman especially seems to take it hard.
I love the panel where Superman is kneeling next to Hot Spot. The “confessions” page previously talked about how Hot Spot used a catch phrase, so he would always be remembered. As Superman kneels there, he can’t remember it.
The confessions pages were good set up for what these heroes were going through that brought them to Sanctuary. Using Arsenal and Flash(Wally) brought more meaning to confessions. It was Harley that really stood out. Not entirely sure why she is with superheroes, but I like how her confession starts as the usual brazen and cocky Harley Quinn, but in the last couple panels, even she breaks down.
In fact, in a lot of ways it is Harley that really stands out in this opening issue. Tom King did a great job bringing Harley’s duality out in this issue. To start she has a humble demeanor with something heavy weighing on her shoulders. After a quick diss to Mr. J, she explodes into a wild, killing fury as she assaults Booster Gold. Then as she and Booster lay in the field, hurt from the fall, she seems to have some sort of compassion for the man that killed Sanctuary…. possibly.
I really liked how Harley and Booster are set up as the possible killers while they both lay there broken and exhausted. We are left pondering if one or both are the killers, yet if they are, were they themselves when it happened? It feels like we might have a race for them to prove what happened while being dogged by the Trinity.
I really like the feel to this series and where I think it is headed. I love the deep emotions that are being explored. It really is a side of super heroes that is seldom touched upon. It reminds me of the song by Five For Fighting – Superman (It’s Not Easy). The song talks about Superman lamenting having to always be a superhero and doing things even if he doesn’t like too. I cant wait to see what then next issue brings.