Comic Reviews: Event Leviathan and Silver Surfer: Black!
Event Leviathan #1 (DC Comics)
With the Summer officially kicking off, it’s time for the old comic book standby: major line-wide events. While the DC events typically veer into the universe encompassing mega stories, Event Leviathan is a more grounded one, detailing the secret agent side of the DC universe, which isn’t a big surprise when you see the names on the credits for the issue: Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev.
As the major espionage agencies of the DC universe fall, it’s up to Batman, Lois Lane, Green Arrow, and Steve Trevor to piece together who this mysterious Leviathan organization is, and what they have planned for the world now that all of their rivals are gone. All of the characters have some connection to one of the agencies that was taken down, and while they may not all agree with one another, they need to put a stop to Leviathan before it’s too late.
That may not seem like the most exciting start to a big event series, but that’s probably the aim that Brian Michael Bendis is going for. From the start, Event Leviathan hasn’t been pitched as a huge, universe-shattering event, but more of a mystery series that will put the greatest minds of the DC universe to the test. In a lot of ways, Leviathan is the most at ease Bendis has been since making the jump to DC. While I’ve enjoyed his work on the Superman titles, Leviathan finds him in a genre he works best in: mystery.
Bendis is knowns for working with some of the best artists in comics, and Alex Maleev is definitely high up on that list. Known for his work with Bendis on Scarlet and Daredevil, Maleev probably isn’t the first person you’d think of for a big DC event book. But then again, this isn’t like the other big DC event books, with a much bigger focus on mystery than action. Bendis’ script is well suited for Maleev’s style, so the fact that this issue is more about the main characters discussing what’s happening as opposed to beating the crap out of people is actually a plus.
So far Event Leviathan is a lot different from other big event books, and that’s a welcome change of pace. Too many times these events become pretty formulaic, to the point where you can figure out the outline for the series before the first issue is even published. But Bendis and Maleev look to really shake up the formula by making Event Leviathan the anti-event book, and that looks to have worked out pretty well so far.
Silver Surfer: Black #1 (Marvel Comics)
While we haven’t gone without a Silver Surfer title for awhile, that doesn’t mean that Silver Surfer: Black doesn’t have a lot of hype surrounding it. Written by Thanos and Venom writer Donny Cates and drawn by Tradd Moore, the insanely kinetic artist behind The Strange Talent of Luther Strode, a lot of people have their eyes on the character than before, and Black is a welcome return to the Silver Surfer stories of old, featuring epic prose, weird visuals, and cosmic action that needs to be seen to be believed.
Spinning out of the pages of Donny Cates’ first issue of Guardians of the Galaxy, Silver Surfer: Black finds Norrin Radd lost in a black hole after saving Beta Ray Bill, Cosmic Ghost Rider, and others from a devastating fate. After falling for what feels like years, the Surfer finds himself on a strange planet that is extremely hostile towards him, and comes into conflict with the character you would least expect to find in a Silver Surfer book.
Donny Cates’ has made a huge splash in recent years on the indie comics circuit and with Marvel, and Silver Surfer is no exception. Cates’ script is full of the type of narration that would feel right at home with old school Stan Lee issues of the character, and he doesn’t skimp on the weird cosmic adventures that you expect the character to go on. In fact, this opening issue has some of the best weird space stuff I’ve seen in Marvel for some time, thought I don’t think you’d get quite as much out of it if you didn’t read the first issue of Guardians of the Galaxy.
If the script for Silver Surfer: Black sets up the insane cosmic action, the art by Tradd Moore takes it to a whole other level. Trust me when I say that you won’t see another book from a major comic publisher that looks quite like this one. Moore peppers his script with a ton of wild visuals, and uses the script Cates provides him with to really let loose and go wild with the art. Every panel of this book is stunning, and a true return to form for Moore.
Silver Surfer: Black is absolutely going to scratch the cosmic Marvel itch that many Marvel Zombies have, and will easily go down as one of the best comics released from the publisher this year. The final page is truly a sight to behold, and will guarantee that longtime readers of everything Donny Cates has written for the publisher will be picking up issue two. I know I will be.
Posted on June 12, 2019, in Comic reviews and tagged Alex Maleev, Brian Michael Bendis, DC Comics, Donny Cates, Event Leviathan, Marvel Comics, Silver Surfer: Black, Tradd Moore. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.