DC’s Second Wave of New 52 books is here and one of the two that I decided to grab was James Robinson and Nicola Scott’s Earth 2. Set in an alternate world than all the other DC titles, Earth 2 promises to reintroduce the Golden Age heroes that made up the Justice Society of America.
So, this wasn’t an issue I was originally going to grab, but I decided to give it a go anyway. Was the first issue worth checking out, or does James Robinson write up a stinker? Read on!
I’ve never read Robinson’s Starman series, and haven’t been reading his Shade series right now either, so I don’t know about any of his books that are actually praised, but I do know plenty about all the stuff he’s done that WASN’T good. Since the majority of that stuff was all Justice League related stuff I had this overbearing feeling that this title wasn’t going to be worth much, but I really just couldn’t help but checking it out. Robinson’s been seeming to do more good than bad as of late, and he seems to have plenty of leg room with Earth 2, so he should be able to deliver something worth checking out. Luckily, that was true, and Earth 2 is well worth the $4 price tag.
The issue starts by retelling the events that transpired in the first arc of Geoff Johns’ Justice League title, where Darkseid sent his Parademon’s to attack Earth, except that things are quite different here on Earth 2. Firstly, a form of the Justice League has already been assembled for long enough that they have a base of operations and that they know how to work together, but it only consists of Earth 2’s versions of Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. Together the three fight off the Parademon’s and eventually save the Earth albeit with an ultimate price. In one of the opening pages a narrator mentions that this mission would be their last, and that narrator isn’t exaggerating.
The battle scene here, while recreating the plot of the first Justice League arc, stands out quite a bit in the characterization of the heroes involved. Robinson delivers the Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman that we’ve known already, a team that’s familiar with each other and who have worked together for a while already. This really changes the dynamic of the story shown, and makes it, honestly, more exciting than the six issues for Justice League that basically told the same story, albeit with a different outcome. And it’s really that outcome that sold the issue for me because it came as a surprise and set the tone of the series as far as showing us why this one is going to be so much different than the stuff set on DC’s main post-Flashpoint world.
The rest of the issue, after this big intro battle, lends focus to familiar names Alan Scott and Jay Garrick, and it’s Jay’s scene that really stole the show and delivered a conclusion that really makes me want to come back next month for more. The new origin for this Flash, as far as from what we see in the last pages of this issue, seems like it’s going to be really damn awesome, and I also can’t wait to see Alan Scott’s transformation into Green Lantern in the months to come.
Basically, Earth 2 is everything I would have wanted it to be and more, but at the same time nothing that I expected for it to be. I didn’t have high expectations here, but I’m really happy I decided to grab this issue anyway, despite my reservations. It was a really fantastic intro to this new series, and this new world, really. In fact, I would have much rather have had this as the first issue to usher in the New 52 than what we got with Justice League. Not exactly in what transpires within the issue itself, but in the daring plots that were explored, and the amount of awesomeness that is stuffed into this single issue in order to introduce us to a new world. My consensus? If you’re wavering on this one, then check it out. It’s well worth the price of admission, and I really hope the quality continues.
GO Rating: 4.5/5