SPOILERS ahead for DCeased: Dead Planet #1.
The multiverse of DC Comics is getting bigger with the expansion of DCeased. So far, the miniseries has spawned quite a few adventures pitting the “World’s Greatest Super Heroes and Villains” against a twisted version of the Anti-Life Equation that is on a “zombie-like” path of destruction.
Luckily, with issue #1 of Dead Planet, Tom Taylor and Trevor Hairsine do a great job of creating a quick catch-up of what has happened in the DCeased-verse so far. I have to say it is great to return to this storyline, but I also go in with a shielded heart as Tom Taylor has a way of getting you to become fond of a character and you honestly don’t know what fate Tom will create for them. So be prepared, get your emotions ready, and let us jump into Dead Planet #1.
As I mentioned, Tom and Trevor give a great recap of what has come before and it was a very nice treat to see Trevor revisit some of those characters in that garish design. You can’t feel anything but sorry for Cyborg in the opener as you learn of what has happened — how he can’t escape it and also be trapped as a disembodied head for five years in the worst fate out of all the characters I’ve seen so far.
Tom does a great job getting into Cyborg’s head space — you can really feel the agony in the character’s voice. Trevor draws the Anti-Life version of these DC characters wonderfully, but the image that I think will be the most emotional for many is to see John Constantine drinking with the ashes and ghosts of his friends. That ghoulish shoutout to A Good Day to Die is amazing.
We see how the next generation of heroes has grown into their mentor personas in Damian Wayne, Jonathan Kent, and Cassie Sandsmark becoming Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman respectively. I do appreciate the costume designs as they manage to mix elements of the classic with the new generation very nicely; also, the humor with Damian and Jon is greatly appreciated in this dark world.
Fans of Green Lantern Dinah Lance rejoice, as she is here in the story as well. There are great moments with her and Ollie…or maybe not. I do wonder about the alien race that this new Justice League is in conflict with; are they just for introduction, or will they play a part later on in this mini-series?
Things look up as the JL and the aliens manage to create peace, but things are interrupted by a distress call from Cyborg. This brings up an interesting dilemma for the team: go back and risk everything, or leave him behind? Of course, heroes never leave anyone behind, so we return to the original Earth 1 that is totally infected, but we get a great reunion with Jon and Krypto, heartwarmingly drawn by Trevor (love that super tail wagging ability by Krypto).
Of course, with something happy happening, the drama starts to unfold. There are two two-page scenes in the end battle of this issue and they are just amazing and the carnage they contain is something else. Our new generation Justice League suffers some losses and hits which make for great cliffhanger moments but also we have hope: we have a cure.