Brightest Day #9
Written by Geoff Johns and Peter Tomasi
Art by Ivan Reis, Patrick Gleason, and Joe Prado
Well, it looks like the book has developed its new format; open up with some Deadman action, put him with his next focus, then jump and cover someone else for the rest of the issue. This issue is J’onn’s, which immediately sets it apart as J’onn has had one of the better stories thus far in Brightest Day. We also got our first real look at the new Aqualad as he was actually given a few pages of spotlight instead of just a random cameo.
I’ve been enjoying this book thus far but I understand the complaints. It’s relatively slow moving as it tries to cover multiple characters and stories that are only loosely tied together, and trying to spread that out equally doesn’t always work as well as some would like. Not to mention that it’s just a bit jumpy, as you have Aquaman and Mera cleaning up BP’s oil spill, J’onn chasing mysteries of Mars and the Green, Ronnie and Jason figuring out the Firestorm Matrix, the Hawk’s in another world altogether, and then Deadman bouncing around tying things together. It can get a little disjointed, I won’t lie. 52 this book isn’t, it’s a completely different beast entirely.
J’onn makes for a great focus as Johns and Tomasi have shown that they really do get the heart and soul of the Justice League….and if anything, this issue makes me want to see either of them write a solo series for him. It’s not a giant spoiler that this issue features J’onn in the forest of Star City, and the way his body reacts to it is priceless. It’s also not really a spoiler to say that Green Arrow shows up for the events of the issue because, well, he’s on the cover. The interplay between the two characters in this issue, given J’onn tree burning mission and Ollie’s living-in-the-tree-he-hugs mission….not to mention that J’onn’s presence alone has been killing plant life since his return from the grave, it leads to a fun little back and forth as J’onn finds much of himself in Ollie’s current situation. It’s not often we see the two get to interact, and the writers nailed the fact that these are two old friends who don’t always get along.
The other story of the issue is the impending debut of Aqualad, well, I mean, Jackson has already debuted, but next issue is being totted as his full on debut issue. So this issue we had Aquaman set up looking for him, Jackson’s first showing of his abilities, but the capping of it? We got to see some awesome Black Manta action. The Manta doesn’t get nearly enough love, and so far if I’ve learned anything from Brightest Day it’s that Johns and Tomasi have full intention of putting him over as a bad ass villain, and of this, I approve.
The art is up to the usual standard of goodness, and Gleason’s work on J’onn was just amazing. And I think Joe Prado drew the Black Manta stuff, which was pretty awesome.
It was a fun issue that I enjoyed greatly, though if you haven’t liked the format of the book thus far you probably will maintain the same complaints.
Tags: Aqualad, Aquaman, Black Manta, Brightest Day, Deadman, Geoff Johns, Green Arrow, J'onn J'onzz, Peter Tomasi, Reviews