Erik's DC Comics Review: Justice League Dark #5
Published: January 29, 2012 - 2:58pm
Finishing off the first arc of Justice League Dark and putting an end to the Enchantress' mayhem, Justice League Dark offers a different ending than you might expect, unless you know the characters as well as Peter Milligan does.
Justice League Dark #5
Written by Peter Milligan
Art by Mikel Janin
Edited by Matt Idelson
Cover by Ryan Sook
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The first arc of Justice League Dark has been about the Enchantress going a little crazy after being ripped from her host, June Moone. While the different "team members" have essentially been doing their own thing to try and stop the horrible things she's doing, we've been learning that Madame Xanadu might have had a little bit more to do with things than we initially suspected. In this issue, the members of the team she's been trying to put together finally take to working together, for the most part, and are ultimately successful in stopping the Enchantress's rampage, although the result is not entirely satisfactory to everyone assembled. When everything seems to have died down, Xanadu explains to the group why she's gotten them all together, and although they're all magic based characters, they don't really listen to what she has to say. The end of the book seems a little bit more like the end to a miniseries than the end of the first story arc of an ongoing comic.
Peter Milligan seems to really get his characters. John Constantine, for example, does what he does out of a desire to protect himself. He knows that he's not a hero, but also knows that if he doesn't act, the world may be screwed, and the world is where he keeps his things. Deadman is a little more idealistic, though, and finds himself at odds with Constantine over his actions. Meanwhile, Xanadu does what she needs to do to save the future, and Zatanna focuses on the things she needs to do to help the team. There are a lot of differing viewpoints and a lot of different voices, and Milligan has them all under control. Janin's art works on an almost surreal level, making the magic element of the story really pop. In fact, his work brings to mind some of Ditko's work on early Dr. Strange comics.
Justice League Dark may not be what you'd expect from a comic with Justice League in the title, but I think that works to its credit. If you have any interest in any of the characters, or in seeing a non-standard superhero team, give this book a try. You won't be disappointed.