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Wednesday, 22 November 2017

DC Comics...Day of Judgement!!

"So, What you been up to then?" asked no one in particular.  Well, after 40+ years of research I spent a month or so writing the new book.  Uh, two new books but one.  Gets confusing.  I decided that one version needed to be in the A4 format while another in a smaller format so same contents but different sizes and titles -High Strangeness and UFO Contact?  Biggest book so far with maps, illustrations and photos -530 pages and only £25 (see the AOP Blog for details).
Oh, finding that no UK comic conventions have any places what-so-ever in 2018 for Black Tower (and they have not even opened bookings yet).
Started some preliminary work on the next book Red Paper (II) Felids as well as Strange and Mysterious Beasts.
oh! And I read a comic mini series. Day of Judgement to be  more precise. Never heard of it?  Well you can check out the DC data base or....

Day of Judgment featured the Spectre going on a rampage and destroying New York City, after he was forcibly bonded to the fallen Angel Asmodel by Etrigan. Asmodel, with the Spectre's powers, froze hell over, unleashing Demons and formerly damned souls upon the Earth again, swearing to take his vengeance on the Presence itself. 
The newly formed Sentinels of Magic, along with the JLA, the JSA and others form three teams to deal with different set objectives. A team led by Batman is in charge of staying in Manhattan and responding to the Spectre's onslaught, while a team led by Wonder Woman journeys to Heaven to find Jim Corrigan, the Spectre's previous host, and a team led by Superman voyages into Hell itself to reignite the fires. A team including Captain MarvelS.T.R.I.P.E. and Starfire were sent to retrieve the Spear of Destiny from outer space, the only weapon capable of injuring the Spectre.

Although Wonder Woman's team is unable to convince Jim Corrigan to rejoing the realm of the living, they are redirected to Purgatory, where they meet many deceased heroes whose souls lie in the balance. Sentinel recommends that they bring along Hal Jordan, perhaps the only other soul they would be able to find with willpower comparable to that of Corrigan.
Meanwhile, Superman's team successfully reignites the flames of Hell, although it requires an act of pure evil, and Faust is forced to murder the Enchantress.

Back on Earth, Captain Marvel finally returns with the Spear of Destiny, although it is revealed that Neron has been possessing Superman, and after the Spectre is injured, the three entities, Neron, Asmodel and Hal Jordan are forced to plea their separate cases to the Spectre on the soul plane. Hal Jordan is chosen as the Spectre, as punishment for his previous actions, even through his repentance, and while Asmodel is locked up in Heaven, in Hell Neron is demoted to a rhyming class Demon, suggested to have been Etrigan's plan all along. 

The Quintessence is left to wonder about the ramifications of Asmodel's imprisonment, as Hell can no longer be trusted to keep Heaven's prisoners.
In the aftermath, the Sentinels of Magic are entrusted with the Spear of Destiny by Hal Jordan, now the only weapon capable of injuring him. However, Hal and the Phantom Stranger are the only two who know he made this decision, including the Sentinels themselves.
Now, by this time, I and a lot of other long time comic fans were sick and tired of the rip-off culture in comics.  Five issue series...but you need to buy all the cross-overs!  Look, I was a true Marvelite and Friend Of Old Marvel when that meant something and by 1999 it did not mean a lot (even less now).  I used to buy JLA or the JSA titles but JLA sank lower and lower with each "reboot".
Anyway, to prove a point.  For Day of Judgement....

Around the DCU
  • Anarky meets the Haunted Tank.
  • In Gotham City (still undergoing the No Man's Land crisis), OracleNightwing and Robin deal with deceased gangsters coming back to life and trying to take back their old rackets. Azrael confronts his own Demons, and is forced to fight Biis.
  • Green Lantern has a run-in with The Enchantress.
  • Martian Manhunter combats zombified version of former members of Justice League Detroit, alongside Gypsy.
  • Young Justice deals with Demons, and the reappearance of Harm, back to take revenge upon Secret.[6]Impulse has a camping trip ruined by the appearance of Ghosts.
  • Snapper Carr avoids an otherwise physical confrontation with a demonic entity by inviting it to share some cheesecake with him.
  • Stargirl and S.T.R.I.P.E. team up with the Marvel Family against Dragon King and Solomon Grundy.
  • Aquaman fights a long-dead former aquatic ruler, King Trevis.
  • Superboy meets Etrigan, and they're forced to briefly team up against the Guardian, driven mad by a mystical artifact.
  • Raven and Troia deal with their own relationships to the other realms, and deal with the problems surrounding both of their souls.
  • Supergirl teams up with Zauriel against the Spectre.
  • Superman is possessed by Neron.
  • The JLA attempt to help Hal Jordan deal with his new role as the Spectre
 See? Makes me want to vomit through my eyes even now. That DC had made Hal Jordan, Green Lantern ffs, into a mass murderer named Parallax was bad enough but with the combined Earth crap they had to call the Golden Age Green Lantern "Sentinel"....what would Doiby

I know what you are thinking: "How come you bought a DC mini series if even Marvel was almost bottom of your comic buy list?"  Thank you. I'm glad that someone asked.  The cover art. I saw #1 and the style caught my eye.  Artwork inside tends to not be too great when this happens so I opened it up and...I made sure I got every issue after.  The artist was Matt Smith. This bloke...

Just Google him....but he has done quite a bit of comic work.  Yes, in places, the art had a slight glitch, but you draw that many pages there are bound to be.  But the inking by Steve Mitchell was lovely. Good old style solid inking.  And when you add James Sinclair's colour work you have an eye orgasm.

And the characters involved -the Justice Society of America guys (living and dead), Justice League -Superman and his vulnerability to magic which used to be a  neat angle in days long gone. Zatana, Phantom Stranger, Deadman...Dr Occult....I swooned.  I will admit that I even put off reading the series again because I thought another reading now would lead to my saying "Pfah.  Not that good after all!" It did not.

Did my not buying the cross-overs spoil anything? No. Writing was okay but Geoff Johns seemed to be avoiding giving a real reason why Etrigan kicked this all off in the first place, though vengeance against Neron...or had Old Nick himself been behind the plot?  Makes you think.

It is a series I would recommend because it was a great fun comic.  I know what you are thinking: "It was out in 1999? It'll cost me a fortune to buy all five issues!"  

NO!   There is still a trade paperback available -I just checked Amazon UK and if that mess-up has copies then Amazon US/Europe should have copies.

Now I have to get back to proper writing work.

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