So Much

*New column is ready for eating. This time it’s the 2005 Gilbert Hernandez public access epic The Naked Cosmos. Which is not primarily a comic, but don’t worry, there’s a tie-in comic so it’s all good.


*God, I can’t get the cosmos out of my head! Why, I think I’ve somehow developed the power of precognition! Concerning a comic out this very afternoon! Watch out, there’s big SPOILERS coming!

Black Adam: The Dark Age #1 (of 6)


This debut issue of the new miniseries for the beloved genocidal Marvel family cutup is written by Peter Tomasi, with pencils by Doug Mahnke. Maybe the inks (by Christian Alamy & Norm Rapmund) have had a sort of calming effect on Mahnke’s pencils, because they don’t seem quite a distinctive as they have in the past. Odd, but still very sturdy. Anyway, here’s a quick rundown of what to expect in this toe-tingling superhero saga, depicting Black Adam’s attempts to steal his wife Isis’ remains out of her grave and drag them in a bag up to a Lazarus Pit in the Himalayas:

- A delightful ‘secret identity’ disguise for the main character, attained by having his grief-stricked followers beat him so badly that his face is disfigured beyond recognition.

- A man hung from a tree by a cheering mob after being beaten to death in a case of mistaken identity, with superheroes basically sneering in the people’s faces over their error, while being met with icy indifference.

- Middle Eastern occupation by foreign sources. Relevance!

- A bloody gun melee, with corpses laid out in a row in the aftermath, a skull split open to reveal what seems to be brain matter, though the coloring isn’t specific.

- A hasty grave robbery that leaves an important plot point/portion of the deceased’s anatomy behind for covert collection.

- A nice meaty close-up of cannibalism, flesh being chomped right of an arm in the raw.

- A fellow sliced in half, his intestines spilling into the snow. To be fair, this is part of the cannibalism bit too.

- A rotten, broken-apart corpse dumped into a Lazarus Pit, piece by piece.

- And finally, just when you thought things were getting a wee bit overbearing, good ol’ Isis rising toned and curvy from the pit for some wet, steamy, fan-friendly nudity. God bless America and DC Comics.

- Wait a minute… something’s wrong with this nudity…

- Oh my god, the Lazarus Pit failed to regenerate Isis’ nipples!! THIS IS A TOTAL CATASTROPHE.

And that is really the long and short of the plot. There's pained narration in captions too.

So, in conclusion, yes, I know the comic is subtitled The Dark Age, but this first issue bears resemblance to nothing so much as some embarrassingly misconceived post-Watchmen shot at ‘dark’ superhero relevance. It’s neither compelling nor shocking, just ugly and pandering. Please buy something else.