Dark Days: The Casting Review
Written by: Scott Snyder & James Tynion IV
Art by: Jim Lee, Andy Kubert & John Romita Jr.
Inks by: Scott Williams, Klaus Janson & Danny Miki
Colors by: Alex Sinclair & Jeremiah Skipper
In Dark Days: The Forge, Hawkman wrote in his journal detailing his long history studying the strange metal at the center of this storyline. Batman, who has been researching the metal for some time, follows up on his current leads on their strange origin, including Plastic Man and the Anti-Monitor’s tower. Meanwhile, Hal Jordan goes to the Batcave on behalf of The Guardians, where he and Duke Thomas find The Joker locked in an underground vault.
Dark Days: The Casting picks up right where The Forge left off, with Hawkman’s journal narrating his journey investigating the mysterious metal. His journey takes us through the first tease for one of the upcoming series from DC’s Dark Matter Line, The Immortal Men. As Hawkman meets with a group of Immortals, including some familiar faces, we are introduced to the first of two powerful blades that are likely to be important in the coming series: The Dagger of Shazam. The story then takes us to the present as Batman is on a quest to find the Sunblade, another powerful weapon that’s connected to the mystery of the metal. Back at the Batcave we find the third plot thread in this issue; The Joker knows a lot more than expected, and tells Hal Jordan, Duke Thomas, and the audience all he knows.
Hawkman’s journal takes us through another Dark Matter tease, this time featuring The Challengers of the Unknown, who get us our first glimpse of what dangers await the DCU in the pages of Metal. After a long and hard investigation, Hawkman departs with his knowledge, also gone until the arrival of the main Event. Batman encounters an old enemy on his search for The Dagger of Shazam, and heads back to the Batcave just in time to protect Duke and Hal from The Joker. A quick epilogue scene and ending cliff-hanger give us an obscured look at the upcoming villains for DC Metal.
Thoughts on the issue:
The Casting didn’t WOW like The Forge did, with less bombshells being dropped, but it still served as an excellent way to lead into an Event. The two prequel books left me with very little idea what the event is going to look like, but I still feel confident I’m going to understand and recognize most of the moving parts. The rotating art teams didn’t serve the book nearly as well as the writing however. Transitioning between Jim Lee and Andy Kubert felt a little off, but the real problem arose going in and out of any of John Romita Jr.’s sections. The artistic styles just didn’t flow together.
While a lot of it is sure to come from Scott Snyder’s Batman run, Dark Days makes it clear that Metal will still be its own story, and not just another chapter in Batman’s. Feeling very much like a cross between Forever Evil and Final Crisis, Metal is poised to be an exciting and dramatic crossover. Stellar script with a crowded art team
Final Score: 8/10
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