The world is frozen and our faithful Justice League is the only thing that stands between being frozen forever and going back to the way things were. In this epic finale, Andy Lanning, Ron Marz, Carmine Di Giandomenico, Howard Porter, and Hi-Fi join forces to wrap up this tale that has more to do with Black Adam than you might think. It also has to do with not repeating past mistakes and making amends for our failures. Check out the preview for a taste. In a story that spans all the way back to the 10th century can the heroes stop a super-powerful Frost King hopped up on Kryptonian crystals?
Everything comes together nicely here amounting to a lot of punching and superpowers at work to keep the Frost King at bay and to tamp down his somewhat mindless reign. Wonder Woman plays a bigger part than most of the Justice League–possibly because Wonder Woman was set to have a movie out this year–which ties into her and Themyscira’s long history. Ultimately though this event builds off previous issues like Swamp Thing’s new form and Aquaman’s necessary late arrival. Put simply, this series stands alone from beginning to end and that’s a good thing.
To give the book a bit more oomph the epilogue reveals a key detail that adds purpose to the event. It also puts an interesting spin on Black Adam’s perspective along with how he’s been mistreated. It’ll be interesting to see if any threads built in this event will be used later. Given where things leave off and how well the creative team has built up new characters and ideas it’s likely, but there’s no pressure to continue immediately after DC Future State.
Much of this issue is biding its time to show off some action with an imbalance in the use of the Justice League characters. Superman is floating about mostly with little to do and Batman certainly can’t do much. It leaves you wanting for more team action. There’s a healthy dose of Deus Ex Machina to resolve things too and turn the tide though at this point that trope is a major player in war scenes. This event was never about the Justice League, though, as its focus was on new and old characters and how past acts affected the present.
The art looks stupendous with cool coloring effects throughout. It has that blockbuster feel we’ve come to expect from event comics. It’s big-time in your face fight scenes that look glorious. In fact, it’s two big fights come complete with kaiju sized action! The epilogue is drawn by Marco Santucci, which puts a nice cap on their work on the series with color artist Arif Prianto. Santucci’s work has given this event a uniqueness that’s unmistakable and it creates a through-line in the event that gives the book a backbone to build off of. For that, the book succeeds quite well at capturing the artistic merit of various artists on a single event.
Giandomenico and Porter’s styles gel well with an ever so slight cartoony vibe to both. There’s high drama in their lines which suits the narrative that is classical in its approach to last-second saves and heroic beats.
Justice League: Endless Winter #2 is a fitting end to a story that’s gone big from its first panel and never looked back. With its use of flashbacks and world-ending moments to its finale that doesn’t hold back the event succeeds. This finale does lack a greater purpose, though new backstory and characters are now ready to explore plus there is a new wrinkle with Black Adam’s history, too. This is a fine cap on an event that delivers its promise for big action and intriguing mysteries.
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