Monday, May 29, 2023

Bullet Review: Dawn Of DC Primer #1

Saturday May 6rh was Free Comic Book Day.

So imagine my surprise when I walked into my comic show on May 23rd and discovered another free comic book for me to grab. the Dawn of DC Primer #1 was on the shelves for free and included not only a new original story by Joshua Williamson and Leandro Fernandez but also some Who's Who style ads for some of the newer titles on the shelves. 

'Dawn of DC' is a decent enough tagline for a Rebirth style soft reboot of the line. Ollie is back in a solo title. Hal is the GL acting on Earth again. Superman is flying high in his solo book. We also are getting a new Cyborg book, the new Doom Patrol book, and a new look at the Titans as the premier superhero team in the DCU.

I do find it interesting that it was the Knight Terrors preview that was given out on FCBD. This book seems more like a true primer on the whole DCU, something you might want to entice new readers with. If you are using FCBD to see what DC has in mind, would you suddenly pick up a company wide crossover lasting 2 months?

The story in the issue is solid enough, showcasing Amanda Waller as a true villain, working with C-list villains to put a bounty on all super-heroes heads. I really don't like this turn Waller has taken over the last couple of years. She is a megalomaniac on par with Luthor here, thinking she knows what is needed to right the world and willing to do anything to achieve it.

This does include some references to the new books coming into the fold. We get a nifty new magic item for the DCU. The art by Fernandez has a sort of Sean Phillips roughness to it which works for the mostly dark nature of the story. That is a very cool wraparound cover by Jeff Spokes. And who doesn't like (pseudo) Who's Who pages. 

On to this quick look at the story.

The story is narrated by Waller.

She notes that the latest crisis has ended (that'd be Dark Crisis) and the heroes have reassembled, gathered their families, and are smiling.

We get a shots of all the families ... the Supers, Batman and Robin, the Amazons, and the Titans.

Love the action shot of the Superfamily. All smiles.

Waller has been working with The Council of Light (I think that is what this group is called). 

Reminds me very much of the early Young Justice cartoons. Who knows which villains are pulling the strings here. But Waller has been given the okay from this group to use extreme measures to achieve her goals.

I don't know. 

I like Waller as a good person willing to do bad things for the greater good. But she know reads like a bad person doing bad things for her own warped views.

She enters a bunker where a bunch of C-list villains are waiting for her. I mean Bug-Eyed Bandit, Trident, and Crazy Quilt are in attendance.

Waller reminds them that the heroes are dangerous and will bring ruin.

Nice panel here as she mentions the heroes, showcasing all the new Dawn of DC books. This could be an ad in and of itself. I like the art here, Steel and Power Girl looking really solid. But I doubt Waller is really focusing on these heroes in particular.

While Waller talks to them, her agent the Peacemaker is leading a mission to Lazarus Island.  (Is that Lady Peacemaker with him ??)

They escape some armed drones and retrieve 'The Helmet of Hate', looking suspiciously like a dark version of Dr. Fate's.

Of all the pages, Fernandez's art shines brightest with these Peacemaker pages. I love to see Fernandez on a street level title with fisticuffs!

I'll wait to see if the Helmet of Hate lives up to the hype. But it looks pretty good. Make it a helmet for a Lord of Chaos, the opposite of Nabu.

Meanwhile, in the meeting, Codename:Assassin decides he'll off Waller.

But despite having her dead to rights and despite his being a well-trained killer, she is able to disarm him and kill him.

It seems tough to swallow unless she has powers now that I don't know. Waller killing Assassin seems a stretch. 

With the threat over, she makes her pitch. Clean records for anyone who kills a super-hero, any super-hero.

Open season on heroes sounds pretty grim. You know some low level heroes will need to die to make this threat seem real.

I just have to point out the solid Supergirl on the cover. Spokes makes her look great.

Can't beat the price. And I didn't mind the story. Solid art. And it does introduce the underlying DCU threat for the upcoming year. Too bad that scene were Waller is more skilled than Assassin. That kind of threw me off.

Overall grade: B+


Martin Gray said...

There was a Helmet of Hate in Jimmy Olsen #68, a while back, you never know!

You do know how much I hate this twisted, so-called Amanda Waller. I’d still not be surprised were she revealed to be from Earth 3, and get killed by the real Wall.

One way or another, this storyline looks to be terrible.

And I think the lady’s name is Peacewrecker… ah yes, it’s in one panel.

H said...

There also was Lords of Chaos version of Doctor Fate in New Adventures of Superboy #25, so they've got that to work with as well.

I'm not as sure about the Supergirl look- a bit too Carol Danvers for me. They're both distinct characters, and I'd rather she not have to ride on someone else's coattails.

Anonymous said...

Apropos of nothing but the upcoming Adult Swim Cartoon "My Adventures with Superman" have themselves a Kara Zor El voice actress, details here:

Keep in mind she is listed in but one ep and we don't know much about the context...

But I'll try to get a look all the same.