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Review: Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1

DARK NIGHTS: DEATH METAL GUIDEBOOK #1

I remember “guidebooks” from back in the day. They’d be a lot of text that were more like roleplaying game supplements than comic books. And that’s what I expected with Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1. I was also really wrong about that as well. The Dark Nights: Death Metal tie-in is full of standalone stories and tales that shed more light on what has happened. It’s also a perfect guide for those that skipped “Year of the Villain” and want to catch up.

Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1 featured five stories from various creative teams and in between it has one-page guides/sketches that I was expected more of. As with all anthologies, the quality varies in story and art but this is the rare case where everything is at least good if not great. The story subjects, tones, and focus are all different delivering insight into the event.

The main chunk of the comic is made up of the “Fall of Earth”. The story goes into detail exactly what happened. While it skips some of the lead up it’s the perfect read for those who want to know what they missed. In goes into so much detail it spoils the first three issues of Dark Nights: Death Metal as well. It’s the Cliff’s Notes version of the event and when I got to the end, I felt like I had a good grasp as to what was going on and the why. None of it was Earth-shattering (pun intended) but I feel like I have a bit more of a grasp as to what’s going on now.

The other four stories focus on various heroes and villains and where they stand.

Harley Quinn gets a spotlight as she explores the irradiated wastelands and it answers some questions as to what has happened to some villains while raising questions as well. Aquaman is the most intriguing of the stories as it shows a former King subjugated and folded to protect his people. We learn more about Wonder Woman and her jail of villains. The story is the highlight of the comic delivering an emotional punch. Wrapping it up is a story featuring Batman, Jonah Hex, and the Joker Dragon. While the overall story is the weakest of the bunch it also has some key details that will impact the main story. There’s a reason Hex was chosen by Batman and something he must do if things go sideways.

The art is pretty solid all around. The styles vary a bit but none of it varies too much from each other. It’s unique but cohesive at the same time. All of it is good across the board and each has its moments that’ll leave you lingering. With a limited amount of pages to work with, the art is key to tell the story and bring emotion.

Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1 is a one-shot tie-in that really works. While it feels like it should have come out earlier in the event, it does a great job of acting as a starting point for those who missed the first three issues. It answers a lot of questions and also drops some key hints for the main story as well. It’s a spin-off that feels as vital as any main event issue.

Story: Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson, Chip Zdarsky, Becky Cloonan, Vita Ayala, Christopher Priest
Art: Doug Mahnke, Khary Randolph, Becky Cloonan, Dan Panosian, Eduardo Risso
Ink: Jamie Mendoza
Color: David Baron, Emilio Lopez, Tamra Bonvillain, Luis Guerrero, Eduardo Risso
Lettering: Tom Napolitano, Dave Sharpe, Steve Wands, Ferran Delgado, Willie Schubert
Story: 8.15 Art: 8.15 Overall: 8.15 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyAmazon Kindle Zeus Comics

Preview: Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1

Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1

Written by: Scott Snyder, Vita Ayala, Becky Cloonan, Chip Zdarsky, Joshua Williamson
Art by: Doug Mahnke, Eduardo Risso, Dan Panosian, Khary Randolph, Becky Cloonan

Earth is turned upside down, shrouded in a realm of darkness after the Justice League’s defeat by the cosmic goddess Perpetua. Now the Batman Who Laughs and his army of Dark Knights rule the planet, wreaking havoc on humanity and raining destruction on the world. As Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman, and other heroes fight to survive in this strange new landscape, one cloaked figure has been observing from the sidelines, creating a guidebook to this new world and its evil leaders in the hope of forming a plan of justice… and penance. This issue showcases the new factions of Earth and explores the mystery of what happened to our heroes after their battle with Perpetua. How did Wonder Woman become the queen of Hell? How did Batman find the Black Lantern ring? And what happens when Harley Quinn takes charge of the Wasteland, and finds love in the process? All this and more in this jam-issue exploring the new world order.

Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1

Dark Nights: Death Metal Expands with More Issues and One-Shots

DC has revealed some big Dark Nights: Death Metal news today! The anticipated series begins on June 16 and is now seven issues! But, it’s expanding further! The series is getting two one-shots, Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1 and Dark Nights: Death Metal Legends of the Dark Knights #1!

Ahead of September’s skip month for Dark Nights: Death Metal, DC turns up the volume and calls in reinforcements to give fans more than they ever bargained for! A week after Dark Nights: Death Metal #3 publishes on August 11, the world of Dark Nights: Metal expands with Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook to include stories by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson, Becky Cloonan, Vita Ayala, Chip Zdarsky, Christopher Priest, Doug Mahnke, Dan Panosian, Eduardo Risso, and Khary Randolph! Collected in Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1 on August 18 with a cover by Yasmine Putri, the stories in this one-shot showcase the new factions of Earth and explore the mystery of what happened to the Justice League after their battle with Perpetua.

Dark Nights: Death Metal Guideboo

As Wonder Woman, Superman, Batman, and other heroes fight to survive in the strange new landscape of an Earth turned upside down and shrouded in a realm of darkness, one cloaked figure has been observing from the sidelines, creating a guidebook to this new world and its evil leaders. Find out how Wonder Woman became the queen of Hell! Discover how Batman finds the Black Lantern ring! And see what happens when Harley Quinn takes charge of the Wasteland, finding love in the process! All this and more in this jam-packed issue exploring the new world order.

And then, because every legendary performance needs a bigger, bolder second act, Dark Nights: Death Metal Legends of the Dark Knights #1 drops on August 25 with a cover by Tony S. Daniel! This one-shot features stories from DC’s Dark Multiverse by Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Joshua Williamson, Peter J. Tomasi, Warren Ellis, Garth Ennis, Daniel Warren Johnson, Frank Tieri, Tony S. Daniel, Jim Cheung, Joëlle Jones, Riley Rossmo, and Francesco Francavilla.

Dark Nights: Death Metal Legends of the Dark Knights #1

In this collection of short tales where demons dwell and reality is overrun by monstrous versions of the Dark Knight, learn the terrifying secrets of the new Bats Out of Hell and other creatures of the night like Robin King, whose origin is unimaginable! Plus, read about the secret buried beneath Castle Bat, the sentient Batmobile, and…how did Batman turn into a killer robot dinosaur?

August is metal as hell with Dark Nights: Death Metal #3 on 8/11, Dark Nights: Death Metal Guidebook #1 on 8/18, and Dark Nights: Death Metal Legends of the Dark Knights #1 on 8/25!

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