Young Justice #8 – Brian Michael Bendis, Writer; John Timms, Artist; Gabe Eltaeb, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Corrina: More Multiple Earths
Ray: After an extended break, Young Justice, the best book in Brian Michael Bendis’ DC lineup returns with a bang as Young Justice’s tour of the multiverse continues in Young Justice #8. Last issue sent the heroes to the Kingdom Come verse, where they met a frosty but reasonable reception. This issue will make them nostalgic for that, as they arrive on Earth 3 – where the Crime syndicate has abandoned the world and it’s now ruled by a gang of superpowered teenagers led by the fascist punk Amaxon Thunder. It took a bit for me to realize that this was supposed to be an evil Cassie – the decision to give Amaxon black hair confused me and didn’t lend itself to a good match, unlike the other counterparts. The action comes fast and furious in the early going, as every hero is pitted against their doppelganger. Cassie and Conner have mostly physical fights, but Impulse has the best scene in a looney-tunes inspired scene and Robin’s counterpart is as smart as him but much more dangerous.
The event that everyone will be talking about this issue is the goings-on with Tim’s new name. His evil counterpart calls himself “Drake”, as Drakes are dangerous birds and he feels no reason to hide. The series hints heavily – through some great metacommentary from Bart – that Tim will be taking this name himself soon to separate himself from Damian, and I’m not sure how I feel about that. Tim’s earned the right to call himself what he wants, but the character filled the role of Robin more effectively as Batman’s partner than any character before or after. The addition of a chaotic neutral version of Stephanie Brown, fighting the good fight against Amaxon and her minions, promises some shocking reveals, as well as her story, will continue next issue. Young Justice #8 tries to pack a little too much into twenty pages, complete with one more surprise doppelganger in the end, but the dialogue here is some of the best Bendis has delivered since his early days at Marvel.
Corrina: For those looking for an issue full of action with the added fun of evil/perhaps not-so-evil doppelgangers, Young Justice #8 should fulfill all those wants.
Mention also must be made of the page that includes the battle between Tim Drake and his doppelganger, as it’s the best use of silhouttes in a comic that I can recall. It’s an amazing and cool sequence from Timms and Eltaeb.
But after eight issues, I’m still looking for more moments between team members, more interactions that show off their friendship. Granted, this issue has some great lines, especially from Bart, but I’d hoped to see a bit more team bulding, especially with Jinny and Teen Lantern. They still feel separate, apart from the core group, and Cassie feels more like a power puncher than a personality. While I enjoyed the person who turned out to be the narrator of the issue, I can’t help thinking that it’s a missed opportunity. The narration could have been given to one of the regular team and allowed readers not only insight into their inner thoughts but how they viewed the rest of their group.
Overall, it’s a fun book, for certain.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.