So with the conclusion of the hugely successful, both critically and commercially, Blackest Night crossover event, DC Comics launched two bi-weekly twenty four issues series to deal with the ramifications of everything that happened.
One series, Justice League Generation Lost, pops in with a wonderful premise and not so wonderful result. Its twin series, Brightest Day, is an improvement, but only just a smidgeon, which also makes it just a slightly above average read.
With Blackest Night, the dead came back and badness ensued. One end result was several heroes and villains rejoining the land of the living. This series, written by Geoff Johns and Peter Tomasi, deals with the majority of these characters and what mutual quests they all are destined to be involved with.
Basically one core group of heroes, Martian Manhunter, Aquaman, Hawkman, Hawkgirl (can they just call her Hawkwoman please?), and Firestorm embark on separate journeys which will eventually culminate in one final battle to save all. Deadman is along for the ride, as the quasi narrator who is befuddled by what to do with his new lease on life. Various other resurectees make appearances, including Dove, Hawk, and Captain Boomerang, all with differing levels of participation in this epic cosmic event.
It is obvious by the time you reach the conclusion that the reason for this climatic battle is a massive red herring, and kind of boring. Brightest Day really is two things, revive a whack of characters and try to remold them for the fans of today, and to bring another character back into the DC Universe fold. This last part, by the way, leads to the Brightest Day Aftermath mini-series, which sucks so hard it has its own event horizon. Awful beyond belief.
But back to the first part. These attempts to take several problematic heroes and give them the breathe of life has very mixed results. Aquaman becomes a great character again, complete with a rational Mera and a badass attitude, and the Martian Manhunter is brought back to somewhat normalcy, but with the retread of “Am I the last Martian?” plot points for the millionth time. Firestorm still sucks, with DC going with a whiny loser instead of either of the cool versions fans love. The Hawks become unbearable in their incomprehensible plotline, which severely tested my patience. The Deadman follow through is the most human, but also the most stretched out, maybe because he is the lynchpin for so much here.
The other resurectees are briefly highlighted or mentioned here of their, but few held my interest enough to check out those companion stories in other series. Only Jade in Justice League was read by me, mostly eliciting yawns.
This main series has an admirable goal and some successes, but it just feels padded out in order to fill these twenty four issues. If it was a tighter twelve issues and had a tiny rethink of the Hawks and Firestorm, Brightest Day would have been something DC could possibly be proud of. But it isn’t, so instead we get okay to good, which is a shame.
…is currently reading The Amazing Adventures Of Kavalier And Clay by Michael Chabon.