Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Reading Crisis, Part 5: Worlds In Limbo

Crisis on Infinite Earths -- Part 5: Worlds In Limbo

Now we're getting to some real "meat and potatoes" George Perez stuff, as he gets to draw rooms crammed full of lots and lots of people -- time to play spot your favorites!  And if you have a character or characters from DC published at this time, chances are you can find him or her in there somewhere.  (I don't think the Haunted Tank itself is in there, but I am almost certain that I can spot Jeb Stuart).  I also like how Wolfman gives a nice cross-section of chatter and crosstalk to the folks present, adding a certain realism.

Speaking of which, man, Dr. Light is still a jerk, isn't she?  And furthermore, I understand that part of the theme of this issue (as we see later with Wildcat) is that everyone has a role to play, but in the grand scheme of cosmic destruction, do Penguin and Riddler really offer much in the way of assistance?  What is the Penguin going to do, spray gas on the anti-matter cloud from his umbrella?  Is Riddler going to stump the cloud into submission?  At least Monsieur Mallah can be put to good use carrying the Brain around.

So, besides picking out all the characters, The Monitor still is playing games.  A question: How did he record the message before Lyla came if he wasn't sure if it was going to work?  Seems like he was awfully sure of himself.  But then again, he's been mostly right so far.  The idea of a limbo universe contained inside The Monitor is yet another seemingly Kirby inspired idea; appropriate when one considers that a lot of the major new characters in this story also seem to be Kirby style creations.

As an aside, I have to say that I absolutely loved seeing Sgt. Rock taking the Monitor's satellite and all the weirdness completely in stride.  

During the temporal wonkiness, we get confirmation once again that dinosaurs make everything better!  I like the craziness, although the explanation that Monitor "made every calm" is sort of a cop-out.  Admittedly, if not for this cop-out then this point alone would probably take another 10 issues to resolve, so this is probably for the best.  A little sad to see Killer Frost's love of Firestorm pass, to be honest.  It was starting to grow on me.  Also very nice to see both Lana Lang and Lois Lane as TV reporters!

There's a really short scene here which I really, really liked.  We see an older couple who sees their daughter, only their daughter had died years before.  We the reader find out that they are seeing the ghostly image of the Earth-1 counterpart of their daughter.  Very often in these giant epics, we lose touch with what the common man is going through, and I thought in the span of two panels that Wolfman and Perez demonstrated the phenomena of the two Earths merging.  This really stuck with me.

I still have to ask: What's happened with Red Tornado?  Was his android body part of forming the revealed Anti-Monitor's body, perhaps?  Or am I way off base?  Speaking of which, Anti-Monitor looks like a real monster here!

This issue was obviously a change of pace from the previous issues, which was intentional I assume.  I liked the continuing temporal inanity, and all of the little character moments, juxtaposed against the bigger cosmic stuff as well.  The big bad is revealed and the threats keep growing.  I have a feeling that things are going to be coming off the rails for the heroes very shortly.

Next: 3 Earths, 3 Deaths!

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