So, we conclude our review (which we started last week) of DC: The New Frontier with the second half of the comic, in which things come to, well, a conclusion (as opposed to just getting left hanging – which is annoying. The ending of DC: The New Frontier on the other hand… well, I’m not going to spoil my own review.
Title: DC: The New Frontier – Vol. 2
Writers: Darwyn Cooke
Illustrators: Darwyn Cooke
Original Publication Date: 2004
Cover Price: $19.99
Buy From: Amazon.com
The threat of The Centre has, basically, been revealed. Now, the new generation of heroes must work together to save humanity from this malevolent force.
As with the previous installment, the latter half of the comic has a lot of excellent moments – from the big reveals about The Centre, to the destruction of the Flying Cloud, to Hal Jordan becoming Green Lantern. Oh, and the super-powered heroes (Flash, Martian Manhunter, Green Lantern) and the more mundane technological heroes (Black Hawks, Green Arrow, Challengers of the Unknown) joining together to take on The Centre. And, the big “montage” set to JFK’s “New Frontier” speech.
The last bit with the Flying Cloud seems a little rushed to me. Also, the sort of psychic assault/2001: A Space Odyssey homage they do inside the Centre doesn’t work out as well on the page as it did in the later screen adaptation.
Originality – Again, it’s an adaptation of the origins of a bunch of pre-existing heroes (there are little to no new characters who are introduced in this comic), but executed in a very modern way. 4 out of 6.
Artwork – The artwork is still just as good as before. My only complaint is very brief section within the Centre. 4 out of 6.
Story – As I said before, this is the best supers story in the history of comics, in my opinion. 6 out of 6.
Characterization – We get a lot more development for some characters who didn’t get as much development for in the first half (King Faraday, The Challengers). Not as much for the Black Hawks (I still know very little about who they are). 5 out of 6
Emotional Response – I re-read some sections of the comic while I was writing the review – and the “New Frontier” montage still tears me up. Faraday’s “No Hawks, No Doves” speech is framed better in the animated feature though. 6 out of 6.
Flow – The latter half of the story actually covers less ground than the first installments, and it spends more time on it. Consequently, this half of the comic is the best paced of the comic. Not that the pacing of the first half was bad, it just ran into a problem of so many characters to introduce, so little time. Here we’ve been introduced to everyone, now it’s time to get down to business. 6 out of 6.
Overall – As I mentioned previously, if you know nothing about the DC universe, it’s continuity, and the characters, this is the perfect introduction. If you already know that, it’s still a good story. As far as graphic novels are concerned, if there was a “literary canon” of graphic novels, this would be in it. 6 out of 6.
In total DC: The New Frontier – Vol. 2 gets 37 out of 42.