Thursday, September 27, 2007

Identity Crisis #6 (1/05)

Believing the murder spree over, our heroes breathed a sigh of relief and buried their death. Green Arrow explained, "...we... mourn in our own ways..." Aquaman and the Martian Manhunter's involved remembering their lost children together while look out into space from the Watchtower. Arthur explained, "...just the sound of his laugh..." to which J'Onn consoled, "Believe me Arthur-- I understand." However, just as Mr. Terrific and Dr. Mid-Nite were astonished by the results of their autopsy of Sue Dibney, Batman deduced the only possible portal of entry for her killer... tiny footprints on her brain which blocked her bloodstream. Batman called out from the Bat-Cave, "J'Onn, I need you to find Ray!" Surprised by his telepathic cry, Manhunter responded, "Is everything okay?" Batman scowled, "J'Onn, get out of my head! Just find him! Now! And keep him where he is!"

As the book fast tracked to it's conclusion, I as a reader was placed in a difficult position, which was repeated in Mark Millar's similar "Civil War" event at Marvel Comics. Here was an unoriginal premise, in this case a locked door mystery, reinvigorated when told in a new mileau that profoundly effected long-established concepts. An exceptional creative team was highly effective at telling a compelling story which would have intriguing ramifications for years to come. I really enjoyed a new perspective being brought to sometimes hoary old chestnuts. Unfortunately, the circumstances and editorial interference caused heroes to act both decidedly unheroic and painfully out of character, while events in the tale are off-puttingly sordid and borderline inappropriate for the medium. As a result, I'm to this day conflicted about the story, though for certain elements I reserve a dedicated loathing, the big reveal being one...

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