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Review: Dark Nights: Death Metal #5

Dark Nights: Death Metal #5

There’s a point in recent DC events for me where the story becomes too much insider knowledge of DC Comic history. They often can feel like one needs a Ph.D. in DC Continuity to truly understand what’s going on. While Dark Nights: Death Metal #5 doesn’t quite cross that line, it comes right up to it.

Written by Scott Snyder, Dark Nights: Death Metal #5 has the heroes desperately attempting to save the day. The Batman Who Laughs has ascended to god-hood level battling Perpetua for the future of the multiverse. The remaining heroes are ants witnessing giants step around them battling at a cosmic level. But, there’s always hope as a plan is hatched in an attempt to turn the tide and defeat evil.

The event has been full of discussions of “Crisis Energy” weaving in DC’s history of multiverse shattering events. This issue introduces “Anti-Crisis Energy”, a concept when typed out feels a little silly. X hasn’t worked so its opposite will work is the general idea. Presented by Lex Luthor, the heroes are tasked with missions to either drain The Batman Who Laughs energy or seek out a solution to save the multiverse. Dark Nights: Death Metal #5 for one comic generally stops being a spot the different versions of Batman, and instead focuses on the heroes getting together for their final stand.

Dark Nights: Death Metal #5 does bring some reveals as Batman and Superman finally come clean to what’s been hinted for some time. Neither of the revelations are surprising and what they mean for their future is unknown. What the comic does do is focus the event again around Wonder Woman, seeking truth to shine the light of hope. We get some rousing speeches and those “pop” moments of heroes looking at impossible tasks but the issue really is another launching point for what comes next. It’s the “explanation” of how the heroes will win, something that feels like it’s been done a few times already in the event.

Greg Capullo‘s art continues to be the draw of the series. Along with Jonathan Glapion in ink, FCO Plascencia on color, and lettering by Tom Napolitano, there’s some very cool visuals that’ll leave you lingering on the page. Capullo can hit the beat of Snyder’s writing and the two show off their connection of writer and artist that has been built over so many years. And while there’s a few solid moments, the product overall also feels a little forgettable. There’s a lack of iconic imagery so far. It looks great but five minutes later there’s little you really want to go back and look at.

Dark Nights: Death Metal #5 is a fine chapter to the overall event and improved on previous issues. There’s more of a consistent voice from the issue. It knows what it is a bit more. The mix of gonzo, comedy, epic, horror, and superheroes is shrunk down to be more focused on the epic superhero event. It continues an overall frustrating event. It’s clear that this is the vessel by which DC will land the path set out by “Rebirth” but whose tone screams New 52. It wants to create new things and concepts but also is beholden to DC of the past. It’s an event whose chapters have been lesser than the whole, an example being one-shots better than the main series. Much like DC continuity, it’s a bit mixed for everyone. At this point, it feels like an end of the journey and I more want to see where it goes and what’s next than the details of the event itself.

Story: Scott Snyder Art: Greg Capullo
Ink: Jonathan Glapion Color: FCO Plascencia Letterer: Tom Napolitano
Story: 6.95 Art: 7.95 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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