World War III: Week Fifty

World War III is here, and it is one heck of a barn-burning slobber knocker. Throughout the course of week fifty, Black Adam runs the gamut, blasting through Egypt, Australia, Italy, and, finally, China, where he hopes to destroy the government responsible for…well, pretty much every terrible thing that’s happened to him so far in “52.”
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The Great Ten of China still have a closed-borders policy, and they’re adamant about ending the fight themselves. Yeah, right. So, after Black Adam’s killed most of them, August General-in-Iron allows for international help, bringing in…well, pretty much every superhero there is to stop Black Adam. On the double splash page, you can spot the likes of not only the JSA, Teen Titans, and Infinity Inc (who eventually turn tail and run like cowards), but Plastic Man, Guy Gardner, Firestorm, Steel, Black Canary, Green Arrow, Arsenal, Martian Manhunter, John Stewart, Hawkgirl, and a couple of those F-listers from the quickly disbanded worthless JLA that appeared back in Week Twenty-Four. Sadly, Ambush Bug doesn’t have the stones to step up.

In the end, the magic people (Shadowpact and Captain Marvel) develop a plan to take Adam’s powers away by bringing him to the lightning (since they can’t get him to say the word on his own), stripping him of his powers and, subsequently, changing his magic word, so that he’ll never know how to get them back. In the midst of the aftermath following the explosive lightning claps, Atom Smasher (who still believes in the good in the big bad villain) catches Black Adam and lets him go free. The last we see of Adam, he’s walking through the streets of Egypt, mumbling magic words to himself in the hopes that one of them will work. He should try out, “Woozle Wuzzle.”

In the end, it’s not all about the war, however. Professor Morrow gets hold of Red Tornado’s head; hears the “52” voicebox repeat that we first heard way back in Week Five; pops open the head to see what “Reddy” (by the way, I hate that nickname) saw at the fringes of the galaxy; and the results blow his mind. At that point, he’s confronted by Booster Gold and Rip Hunter, who are ready to take some action.

All in all, this issue delivered what it promised. A gigantic war in one issue, involving nearly every active hero in the DCU. I still haven’t read through the supplemental issues, but I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I do have one complaint, however, and it is rather large. The art simply isn’t good. Granted, there’s absolutely no way it could live up to the breathtakingly beautiful cover, but, damn, it downright sucks in a lot of places. For such a large event, why not bring in Jiminez or some other big gun? Who the heck is Justiniano, anyway? Is this the first comic he’s ever drawn? Quite the place for a debut.

The story stands on its own, though, and I’m completely satisfied with that side of things. And, boy, oh boy, can I not wait for the next two weeks. I’ve been wondering where Booster and Rip have been. It’s going to be an exciting couple of issues.

Our “World War III” coverage doesn’t end here, though. Come back all day to read recaps and reactions by the other members of the Legion, as they focus on each of the four supplemental issues that accompany “52.” Jim Doom will give us his take on “A Call to Arms” in just a few short hours. And, after it’s all said and done, and all the reviews are posted up, come back on Saturday for a group discussion covering all the fall-out of this gigantic week.

As for me and my “52” reviews, though?

See ya in seven.