“Endless Winter” is a month-long nine-part event that is getting ever closer to its finish. Justice League Dark #29 kicks off part 7, the latest chapter, this week and everyone’s favorite magical and weird Justice League take center stage. Considering an ancient Swamp Thing took part in banishing the “Endless Winter” villain the Frost King, the narrative is bound to get green and very weird.
The issue opens on a flashback, as has every chapter in the event. Marco Santucci draws said flashback, which focuses on Black Adam, Viking Prince, and Queen Hippolyta defeating the Frost King in the 10th century A.D. Each issue gives us a little more information on what happened to lock the Frost King away, as well as what happened to the heroes who saved the day. This issue offers up the biggest development, which leads to a good cliffhanger that ties into the flashbacks. So far, Andy Lanning and Ron Marz have done well to maximize these heroes’ involvement and it sure is handy that they don’t age.
The part of the story taking place in the present goes down in the Oblivion Bar where Hippolyta convenes with the Justice League Dark. The creative team does well to capture the level of experience Hippolyta has in how she interacts with these characters and pushes them onward to help defeat the Frost King. What comes out on the other side by the end of the issue is quite exciting and should be an interesting development moving forward if editorial deems the return of a certain hero worthy of more stories.
Much like with previous Justice League Dark issues, artist Amancay Nahuelpan delivers big time with creative layouts, especially with interesting gutters and splashy pages that amp up the drama. There is a gorgeous double-page splash of the Green that Swamp Thing fans won’t want to miss. The colors by June Chung amp up these scenes reminding us Swamp Thing and the realm he lives in is quite magical and extraordinary.
This issue is a good example of how Lanning and Marz have swooped in with their event and done well to match the identity of each book. This issue feels decidedly like a Justice League Dark book thanks to the narrative dipping into the weird and strange. Characters also act and sound as they should. Pacing-wise, it does take a bit of time to get into a groove, though that’s partly due to the characters being picked up nearly from nothing to be integrated into the event.
As “Endless Winter” builds towards its finale next week, it remains very clear Andy Lanning and Ron Marz have an event that’s worthy of your time and attention. As it reveals a lost story of the past, we gain new insight into our heroes who face an impossible dilemma as the world freezes over. This event feels wholly singular too, making it a great story for fans who haven’t been reading DC Comics but would like to dip their toes in with modern takes on the characters.
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