Review: The Wrong Earth: Night And Day #3
If you haven’t been paying attention to Ahoy‘s Wrong Earth series, you’re missing out. The Wrong Earth: Night and Day #3 is the first issue I’ve read in time to actually get a review together after catching up on the first volume via trade and the previous two single issues (the first issue of Wrong Earth: Night and Day I read and reviewed before reading the first volume). The beauty of this series is that you don’t need to have read the first volume to enjoy Night and Day because the essential concept of the book is really simple for a fan of superhero comics – or even a person with a slight awareness of a certain character – to grasp; what happens when a silver age hero and his modern counterpart switch places?
The previous issue saw the two counterparts, the gritty Dragonfly from Earth Omega and the charming Dragonfly Man from Earth Alpha finally team up after being stuck in each other’s world for the first volume as they meet in a third world, Earth Zeta, that has been gradually poisoning the other worlds. As you can probably imagine, things didn’t go smoothly when Dragonfly tried to kill a henchman, and the pair ended up captured by Number One, the Joker to their Batman (honestly, now that I think of it, Wrong Earth is a better version of Three Jokers in how the three different versions of the same character has been handled).
Writer Tom Peyer plays into the dichotomy of the two characters and the hallmarks of the eras that they pay homage to with no sense of irony. It took me by surprise a little when I realized that Peyer was treating things like the anti-bullet spray with a genuine seriousness, but as I fell deeper into his world, I realized that there’s a charm to that era of comics that we’ve lost as the medium has trended toward the realism and violence seen in today’s comics. It’s fun. Genuinely fun, and watching Dragonfly’s gobsmacked reactions makes me laugh every time.
The plot of the comic takes a bit of a turn in this issue from where I was expecting the story to go, and I am all for the direction that Peyer is taking this story. He’s taking what is ultimately the bigger conflict of the series and moving it center stage, which opens up the possibility of some fantastic story telling and identity questions that can be explored.
Artistically, penciller Jamal Igle, inker Juan Castro and colourist Andy Troy hit the nail on the head. There’s a generous amount of white in this book, allowing you to focus on certain parts of the art and story. But we also take a visit to both Earth Alpha and Earth Omega, with the two worlds having a distinct flair to their settings, embodied by something as simple as the facial hair or lack thereof of the main characters. There’s a lot to enjoy on the visual journey of this book, a lot to take in, but it’s the subtleties of the art that really elevate the comic as a hole. It sounds almost foolish that stubble can make a book, but here we are.
The Wrong Earth: Night And Day #3, like previous issues also include a couple of prose pieces that aren’t necessarily required reading, but are certainly nice additions to a comic that was already worth buying on the merits of its main story (which clocks in around 20 odd pages). Wrong Earth is fast becoming one of my most anticipated series – whether you start with this volume or you pick up the first trade, you really can’t go wrong with this. Peyer walks the line between tongue in cheek send-up and deadly serious story in the same way a tightrope walker moves across the rope – with impeccable balance.
Story: Tom Peyer Art: Jamal Igle Inker: Juan Castro
Color: Andy Troy Letterer: Rob Steen
Story: 8.6 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy
AHOY Comics provide Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review