Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Leviathan Theory: Event Leviathan #3 Clues Review

I have a Leviathan Theory.

Okay, I have Leviathan Theories.

But the main Leviathan Theory is that Levithan is Ted Kord, the Blue Beetle. That somehow Ted can see the entirety of the DC Universe. All its history. All its Crises. And, in a Watchmen like effort, has recruited the other Charlton heroes to help him get control of this Earth.

And now, anchored onto the conclusion, I read Event Leviathan and try to massage the information given to fit that theory.

And trust me, Event Leviathan #3, while not giving us any physical clues, is filled with enough nuance and innuendo to make me think that this time I am right.

A lot of that has to do with the idea that Jason Todd has every motive to be Leviathan, to wring order out of the chaos of super-villainy and heroes with immutable morals. A lot of it has to do with words Leviathan says themselves.

So enough chitchat. Let's get to the clue review!

Let's start with the cover, which I think is an homage to Batman #618. While this was part of the Hush storyline, it showcases the dead Jason Todd. The death of Jason could be considered one of Batman's biggest failures. But moreover, his not avenging Jason was the impetus behind Todd becoming the Red Hood.

The Joker killed Jason. Batman arrested the Joker. The Joker has killed again and again. If Jason's desire for justice is driven by that, who else could we say could have such a compulsion.

Well, if you're Ted Kord and you can see everything that has happened everywhen then you know you were shot in the head when heroes like Batman didn't join you in your investigation in Countdown to Infinite Crisis.

And you also know that Wonder Woman, who did take that step, was vilified for it, driving a wedge between the Trinity.

Ted has a reason to want to bring order to the world. So something like this doesn't happen again.

Okay, onto the book itself.

 We start out in the Fortress where The Question is musing on Superman's multiple capes.

Perhaps you think that I am wondering if this look at many versions of Superman makes my 'New 52 Superman' theory stronger.

Instead, I think this is a visual clue from Bendis that we have to start thinking about other versions of characters as being potential suspects. Maybe this is that dead Ted Kord actually resurrected.

Or maybe this is to clue us in that Leviathan might be seeing all the versions of himself in hypertime. After all, it looks like each S-symbol here is slightly different.

Okay, maybe a stretch. But why put that in at all if it didn't mean something.

 Remember, much of this theory was born out of the innumberable Watchmen references and themes that have permeated the book. Watchmen are Charlton derivatives. So that veered me into my Ted idea; Blue Beetle being the Leviathan.

Nothing says Watchmen like a 9 panel grid.

Although, this being Leviathan it is more like an 18 panel grid, a 2 page spread of panels.

I think there is no doubt that the Watchmen vibes are real.

 Later, Jason talks about how a 'measured response' to criminals only leads to chaos. And Leviathan is pushing things forward like he would, taking the steps 'crime fighters' don't have the guts to take.

Again, if Jason's feelings are a result of his being killed by a villain, then Ted has the same history. Moreover, Ted's killer, Max Lord, is back running Checkmate in DC Rebirth. If Ted sees all timelines, seeing Lord back in a position of power must gall him.

That's the why.

How can DC timelines play out over and over with villains killing heroes again and again without true justice happening. 

 One more Watchmen vibe to note.

Red Hood notes how you have to respect the craft of Leviathan's attack.

It reminds me of the perfect plan by Ozymandias, a plan which eliminated all loose ends and went off almost perfectly, despite his friends' attempt to stop him.

Whether 35 minutes ago or 42 minutes ago, the plan was great.

That wraps up the Jason side of this issue. Most of it revolves around Leviathan's impetus to do what they are doing.

Now on to the Leviathan/Waller interaction.

For me, the keys here are the actual dialogue words. Think about whoever you think Leviathan is.

Then see that Leviathan says 'Bluffy bluffer.'

Not many people would use words like that. But the easy-going 'Bwa-ha-ha' Ted Kord? I think so.

Not Adam Strange.
Not Hank Hall.
Not Maxwell Lord.
Not J'onn J'onzz.

None of them would say that.

And this was interesting.

What does it mean that Leviathan switches from 'we' to 'I' in this exchange. Is Leviathan the upper tier of the organization but this person is a singular?

Is Leviathan an amalgamation of all versions of one person (we) but one version is 'in control' and therefore says 'I'. Or maybe more than one person wears the mask (we) but the current person has a personal vendetta (thus using the word 'I')? Maybe all the Charlton characters don it at some point?

Does Ted blame Waller for not knowing about Lord's treachery given at the time Checkmate and the Suicide Squad were both under the same government umbrella? Does he wonder if she learned anything from all the people who have died under her watch?

But this could be a knock against my theory though. Perhaps this is someone who was in the Suicide Squad who died under Waller's watch?

And then this.

The idea of more than one person wearing the Leviathan gear has more strength here. Remember in a prior issues, Leviathan puts out a sushi plate and various sundries for the kidnapped Dr. Strand.

This Leviathan talks about bringing a firing squad to Waller. That doesn't like someone running the Leviathan BnB.

I suppose it could be someone with Dissociative Identity Disorder, someone like the Peacemaker as advanced by Martin Gray.

Even here the dialogue needs to be dissected.

Waller mentions 'The Janus Directive', a crossover event between Checkmate and Suicide Squad. I suppose Waller is trying to get a response from Leviathan. Whoever it is, they aren't tipping their hand. They know enough about the Janus Directive to know it is bait. So perhaps Nightshade, the Suicide Squad member is under the mask at this moment.

And then the fact that Leviathan thought Waller would offer a Mother Box in exchange for her safety is also something to mull over. Ted was in the JLA with Mister Miracle. He'd know about Mother Boxes. But he wouldn't say he was bringing a firing squad.

Overall, I still think enough is pointing to the Charlton Heroes, and Ted in particular, that I think I am right.

But there is a lot to unpack here.

What are your guesses.


Steve said...

Look up Janus Initiative, 'cause I Googled it exactly like Bendis wrote it, forgetting that the crossover was Directive instead. It's a group of organizations banding together against one other. I think Bendis is comparing leviathan to that, in that they are taking disparate groups and forcibly bringing them together for a cause...

And all the Charlton Heroes except Vic taking a turn in the identity, physique, and voice disguising armor also explains the differences in word choice and behavior...

Martin Gray said...

A Composite Charltonman does seem to make some kind of sense at this point... is it issue five in which the beans are spilled?

Thanks for the shoutout!

Hassan Alamdari said...

I’m loving the Ted Kord idea but the idea of lieutenants I don’t think goes far enough. I think it’s everyone that does not “belong” in this particular version of the DC universe. It was him going after Plastic Man and Batgirl. Two characters that have had multiple versions. I think Leviathan is going after people that “don’t belong” and have memories of things that couldn’t happen and trying to use that information in some way