DC This Week Roundup – Heroes at the Crossroads

Comic Books DC This Week
Wonder Woman #784 cover, via DC Comics.

Wonder Woman #784 – Becky Cloonan/Michael W. Conrad, Vita Ayala, Writers; Marcio Takara, Skylar Partridge, Artists; Tamra Bonvillain, Romulo Fajardo Jr, Colorists

Ray – 8/10

Ray: The main story this issue is chaotic, with Diana up against several new enemies looking to greet her on her way back from death, and Dr. Psycho continuing to puppet things from behind the scenes. Neither this mysterious Mirror-Lord who has created twisted glass clones of Diana, or the masked Shining Knight who is being puppeted by Psycho as a weapon, really stand out too much, but provide for some strong fight scenes. However, once the Knight’s mask comes off, this issue takes a very interesting turn that might shake up Diana’s status quo for the foreseeable future. This arc did feel like it was keeping time until Trial of the Amazons begins and sets up Diana’s long-term status quo, but it did enough interesting things that I think it closed things out on a high note.

The backup, setting up the upcoming crossover, also has some fascinating scenes. Vita Ayala has delivered a tense story that fleshed out the Bana-Mighdall side of the story, and this final chapter gives Artemis a huge role in the future of Themyscira—and will possibly set her against her sisters. I’m still not sure what the “trial” part is supposed to reflect, because right now it feels more like we’re setting up Amazons: Civil War. But it’ll be interesting to see just how things escalate once all the Amazon clans are in one place.

Black Manta #6 variant cover, via DC Comics

Black Manta #6 – Chuck Brown, Writer; Matthew Dow Smith, Artist; Marissa Louise, Colorist

Ray – 8/10

Ray: It’s the final issue before this series spins out into Aquamen in two weeks, and the conclusion of Black Manta’s adventure is compelling if a bit overstuffed. There is a lot of story in this issue, as Dr. Mist battles to save Gallous’ life while Black Manta makes a devil’s bargain with his twisted successor. Devil Ray has been a compelling rogue for this series, if a bit familiar, and his plan to depopulate and raise Atlantis is a large-scale threat. While the battle between him and Manta is strong and shows some serious character growth for the long-time Aquaman rogue, the rest of the issue struggles to balance all its storylines. The reveal of Torrid’s true nature comes as almost a side plot, and the action can be a little chaotic. But I think this series did the most important thing right—effectively turned Manta from a villain to a protagonist, and set him up for better when the titles combine later this month.

Titans United #6 cover, via DC Comics.

Titans United #6 – Cavan Scott, Writer; Jose Luis, Penciller; Jonas Trindade, Inker; Rex Lokus, Colorist

Ray – 7/10

Ray: The penultimate issue of this out of continuity miniseries is basically action from beginning to end, as the Titans make their move on Blackfire’s ship. With several Titans captured and Superboy under her mental control, it’s all about Starfire in an uncomfortable team-up with Lady Vic to try to break her control. The Titans actually vibe together as a team much better than they have in this series so far, with the team working hard to get their wayward member back. Surprisingly, it’s Jason who shows some real character growth and may have the biggest impact. But the larger problem is that Blackfire is still nothing more than a cackling stock villain who seems to be ready to destroy Earth simply to spite her sister. The addition of a last-second bonus villain who poses a bigger threat comes too late in the miniseries to really have much impact, because we know they’ll be dispatched within twenty pages.

To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.

GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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