Comic Book Review: Dark Nights: Metal #1

If you haven’t already, make sure to check out this stellar opening issue of an exciting new DC comics event…

 

Dark Nights: Metal #1 has been marketed as one of the most ambitious, high-concept DC comics events in recent years. After a couple of intriguing prologues, the opening issue begins things with a bang and shines a light in some previously unknown dark corners of the DC universe.

There is a big epic story unfolding here, but don’t be fooled by its gritty-sounding title and the heavy metal inspired cover art. Dark Nights: Metal #1 is actually ridiculously fun from start to finish. Greg Capullo’s artwork – aided by colorist Jonathan Glapion – is so bright and sharp and it expertly brings this vivid story to life. How can you not love a comic which opens with a Justice League version of the Power Rangers’ Megazord/Voltron!

We’re used to Scott Snyder writing Batman stories with aplomb, but here he brings the necessary zip and energy to make a great Justice League tale – fans will like that Hal Jordan is back on the team rather than Green Lanterns Simon and Baz Jessica Cruz and the Flash is on hilarious form. Though, obviously, you only have to look at the title to realise that this is Batman’s story. There are some major revelations inside which tease some wider signifance to the Dark Knight’s existence.

OK, that’s about as far as I can go without delving into spoilers, so step away now if you haven’t read it, people. After facing Mongul on Warworld, the League return to Earth to find a whopping great mountain has risen up and destroyed Gotham! This begins a plot that goes beyond even the realms of the multiverse – as our heroes discover the existence of the Dark Multiverse, which is now bleeding into the regular world.

The real joy of the book is how Snyder weaves together lots of familiar pieces of DC lore that we have previously not seen in DC Rebirth. The most obvious is the exploration of the Hawkman and Hawkgirl mythology – not to mention the Challengers of the Unknown, Red Tornado, Starman and Doctor Fate.

But the biggest shockwave Metal drops occurs on the last page – when flippin’ Dream of the Endless appears in Wayne Manor! Neil Gaiman’s Sandman comics are still one of the finest pieces of work in this entire medium but it is so rarely crossed over into the regular DC world that this is simply mind-blowing. What with Watchmen’s Doctor Manhattan appearing in Doomsday Clock, it seems all of DC’s most prestigous works are making a comeback.

Clearly inspired by comic book greats like Grant Morrison and Jack Kirby, Dark Nights: Metal is a fascinating, very fun first issue that, ultimately, is a thrilling celebration of the DC universe as a whole. I can’t wait to see how things unfold over the coming months. The series is sset to continue until February.

 

Rating:

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