Friday, July 22, 2016

Reader's Diary #1344- Jeff Lemire (writer), Mikel Janin (artist): Justice League Dark Vol. 2 The Books of Magic

Continuing on in the Justice League Dark series, I was thrilled to see that Jeff Lemire (a personal favourite) had taken over the writing duties with this second volume: The Books of Magic.

Lemire's take is less bizarre than Milligan's, though it doesn't feel like too much of a clash (there are flying houses, after all), but rather a natural progression. With Mikel Janin continuing on in the artist role, it might even be easy to miss that the writer had changed.

This plot revolves around the titular Books of Magic, essentially tomes containing ALL knowledge and therefore an awesome source of power, especially for a trained magician who would know how to use it. The theme, a familiar one to comics especially, is how power, or even the thirst for power, corrupts. But in such "dark" books as these, where the heroes are only marginally better than the villains, the theme takes on better shades of gray.

A few newer characters are introduced this time around, a few old ones are dropped, and familiar ones are better developed. I missed Shade, from Volume 1, and so far, the main replacement, Orchid, doesn't do much for me. This is not to say that I wish Lemire hadn't added her, just that she needs better development yet. Fortunately, with patience, I think it will come. I did, for instance, like Deadman a lot more this time around. Lemire toned down the bro-ish tones of Milligan's take on the character and I began to get a better feel for who the character is. Despite being the ghost of a past life acrobat and having the ability to possess people, he's somewhat of an every-man character and I'm beginning to enjoy that irony. Oh, and did I mention that Frankenstein makes an appearance? That's pretty cool.

1 comment:

Nikki in Niagara said...

Glad you are liking this! And that your opinion of Deadman is changing. He is my favourite DC character. I think it's in "The World's Finest" Vol. 1 where they do his whole background story.