REVIEW: Brightest Day #8 By Geoff Johns and Peter Tomasi

Brightest Day #8

Written By Geoff Johns and Peter Tomasi

Art by Ivan Reis, Patrick Gleason, and Adrian Syaf

It’s like last issue just flicked a switch and the book is just in push forward mode as the subplots finally start getting elaborated on. Last issue gave us the purpose of the Brightest Day returnees as far as why they were brought back, but while that’s all well and good, there has been other stuff going on as well. This issue starts with Boston Brand, and it’s hard not to call him the star of the book, and then it also covers the plots surrounding J’onn and the aftermath of Ms. Martian’s attack, as well as what’s happening to the Hawk’s on Hawkworld.

The pacing is getting tighter in the book, and I think having two main stories and then a few pages for Boston worked here. Unlike when they’ve tried to manage four or five stories in an issue, I actually got a feel for what was going on here as opposed to just feeling like I’d read some teaser pages. We came into this issue knowing the missions of the various returnees, and that the Hawk’s were in another world altogether while J’onn tended the near dead body of Ms. Martian. These were plots that had stretched several issues, and yet we had yet to get a sense of why.

Now we have one, and it improves the story. Much like how the nature of their returns gave a purpose to the title as a whole, now we know why the hell people are doing things. J’onn’s story is still a bit vanilla but the promise given at the end of the issue has me eagerly awaiting what happens next. As with the Hawks, Hawkworld has been created with promise and possibility of giving their origin more of the Johns rub that they received during his previous time with Hawkman. We got a lot of setup this issue in the way of origins and explanations, and it almost feels like one of Johns Reborn stories with Hawkman.

For once I’ve managed to figure out who did what for art, and so I can give some credit. Pat Gleason does some amazing work with J’onn and he’d be on my shortlist for artists in a J’onn solo series. There’s power, emotion, and the aliens in human form still feel like aliens…and given what’s in store for J’onn next, I can’t wait to see how it looks. Adrian Syaf handles the Hawks, and for the most part I like it. There are some questionable panels, but I can definitely see his work improving even from just a year or two ago. And then there’s Ivan Reis doing the Deadman section, which looks great as is par for the course, though I’ll say that his work is still greatly missed in a full monthly. Three pages just doesn’t do him justice.

It wasn’t a perfect issue, but the series is improving and getting steadier after a slow start. Can it keep up the pace, and even improve upon it? I hope so, because this book has the potential to be great.



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