There’s a famous feature in Mad! Magazine titled Scenes We’d Like To See, and that’s just what the conclusion of this mini-series delivers. And I don’t mean simply in terms of the story, the conclusion to Tom Taylor’s cycle of adventures set in an alternate DC Universe. Not at all – if this issue’s climactic scene were translated into our reality, what a wonderful world it would be.
The story so far has the Anti-Life Equation having turned most of Earth’s people into sci-fi zombies. A smattering of superheroes have survived, taking Earth’s uninflected populace to a new world millions of miles away. A few years later, after news of a possible cure, a party of heroes must hold back an incursion by the demon Trigon if they’re ever going to distribute it. At the same time, super-villains, scientists and sundry selfish billionaires hiding out from the anti-living hordes in Australia send out their own ‘cure’ – an army of Amazo androids to blast the zombies to smithereens.
The book opens with the new Justice League’s desperate bid to save the anti-living in the hope they can be returned to a meaningful life.
Meanwhile, in France, a trio of mystic heroes face Trigon.
Hang on, did I say ‘trio’?
Tom Taylor and Trevor Hairsine yet again deliver a hugely satisfying comic book, packed with clever plotting, spectacular action and heartfelt character moments. It’s an alternate DCU, but feels more genuine than a lot of what we’ve seen in the regular comics of late.
As for that ‘most wanted’ scene I mentioned, just imagine heroes with super-speed crossing the world with the Covid-19 vaccine.
Is it crass of me to bring the pandemic into a comic book review? I hope not, but that’s where my mind went.
Anyway, even without possible real world parallels, this is a brilliant superhero comic by Taylor, Hairsine, inkers Gigi Baldassini and Stefano Gaudiano, colourist Rain Beredo and letterer Saida Temofonte and editor Ben Abernathy. Taylor’s ingenious ideas are deftly translated into visual life by Hairsine and co, making Dead Planet a feast for the eye and mind. David Finch’s cover is just the image to entice me to buy… I always love it when art and logo interact.
If you’ve not been following the various DCeased stories, I recommend them all hugely. You could, though, jump into DCeased #1 and enjoy a harrowing tale in which Hope is never allowed to die. And this is where it triumphs.