The New 52's Second Wave: How Is It So Far?

Yesterday was New Comic Book Day, and on the shelves were the replacements for the books DC didn’t like in the New 52, which at least got eight issues apiece.

The four new titles were “G.I. Combat”, “World’s Finest”, “Earth 2”, and “Dial H”. How were they? Taken as a whole, pretty good.

“World’s Finest”

Out of all of these books, this is the most…unreconstructed, is probably the best way of putting it. The combination of George Perez’s pencils and Levitz’s writing makes this feel a bit like a book that came straight out of DC’s early ’80s. It’s rock solid and it’s fun, and it’s especially nice after all the awful redesigns to see that somebody has finally taught Power Girl that cleavage is not the way to go. And it’s also a nice touch that this ties into the canceled “Mr. Terrific”. We hope DC keeps this up: rolling canceled books into new ones will make for some better continuity and make us less bitter over “OMAC” getting the boot.

“G.I. Combat”

This is a good book, but the two stories have a tone problem, a bit. The first one is about dinosaurs attacking North Korea, and while it keeps a straight face so as not to oversell the premise…there are dinosaurs. Attacking North Korea. Admittedly with some absolutely beautiful art, but still. Compare this to “The Unknown Soldier”, who, uh, gets known pretty fast and teeters on the verge of coming off like a mid ’90s comic in the writing. All in all, a solid book, but we’re not sure it’ll do any better than “Men of Combat.”

“Earth 2”

Essentially, James Robinson gets to bring back the Justice Society in the modern day and in a separate reality. What makes this book interesting is that Robinson makes it clear that there will be no Superman, Wonder Woman OR Batman in this book in any way, shape or form in the first issue…and that also he’s not going to stick to the classic origins, considering how Jay Garrick ends the issue. One gets the feeling that this is something Robinson’s been itching to do for years, and it’s got some real promise. We also like the appearance of Apokolips’ soldiers here; we’re assuming that’s going to keep paying off, and the JSA has never really gone toe-to-toe with the Fourth World.

“Dial H”

Man, we haven’t read a book this gleefully weird from DC in a long, long time. There’s a lot to like about this book; the main character is not a chiseled athletic lawyer, but an unemployed fat guy, and China Mieville and Mateus Santolouco have come up with some deeply perverse and weird powers and designs. Seriously, you think Boy Chimney was strange? Wait until you meet Captain Lachrymose.

In short, all four books are worth reading, and we’ll definitely be picking up second issues of “Dial H” and “Earth 2”. How about you?