Generations Shattered is coming out amidst a heavy week of new releases from DC Comics — in addition to this look at the history of the DC Universe, we will see the end of Death Metal and the beginning of Future State all in the same week! So how does Generations Shattered fit into all this? That’s a great question that I don’t know the answer to…yet!
I’m just going to tackle this comic in the only way I know how, and that is by sharing what I felt when reading it and how entertained I was by it. We know there has been a lot of change going on over at DC, and even this story has probably seen changes along the way, but if you are a faithful and attentive reader then you have probably seen some of the extras that may or may not led into this story. You may be asking yourself, then, what should I have checked out before going into this story?
In my humble opinion, I would say you should have at least read the “Generations: Fractured” story from Detective Comics #1027. That doesn’t seem like a lot, especially when we have seen “flashback” stories from Wonder Woman #750, The Flash #750, and the adventure Wally West was going through in Flash Forward. Those stories might come into play later on in the Infinite Frontier.
Now that we have our reading path outlined, the next question is why should I drop the staggering $9.99 price tag on this comic? That’s where the all-star creative team comes into play: Dan Jurgens, Andy Schmidt, and Robert Venditti have crafted an intriguing adventure with a group of heroes from all over the DC Multiverse and timeline. Said group consists of: Green Lantern (Sinestro), Superboy (from the 31st Century Legion of Superheroes), Starfire (from 1983), Steel (from 1993), Batman (from 1939), Booster Gold (from his younger days), Doctor Light (from 1987), and Kamandi (from Earth’s Future). This is quite the lineup and I’m sure there are some fan favorites that don’t get as much screen time along with characters that have ties to our superstar characters. That alone excites my inner fan — I love when we get unusual groupings, but this is especially unusual as they are from different time periods…and maybe even different parts of the multiverse?
The bulk of the story is how this team was brought together. The issue opens on Kamandi living in his great disaster future and now we have something similar to Crisis by way of red skies, but here we have these white fissures from a chronal storm that is erasing everything it touches. That tells us the danger that this group will face and how important their mission is. The gathering parts were pretty entertaining, but I was a little put off by Doctor Light’s portion as she has a huge mission of saving everything but also with leaving her children behind. I know it can be sensible to go on the mission as it will be for the greater good, but it just seemed to wrap a little too nicely.
Once the team is gathered, we are thrown right into a conflict against another rag-tag team of Linear Men from across the DC Comics lore. The action and drama is hyper intense since we are playing for bigger stakes, but I found some familiar techniques at work: a very Golden/Silver Age formula where the team is assembled then breaks off into their own chapter to face their situation. This is where the amazing collection of artists gets to shine as they make these pages colossal and eye-catching.
This is a murderers’ row of talent that justifies the price point as they deliver with an 80-page comic that will hit you right in the continuity. Some of the chapters will shine more than others depending on your tastes, but overall they managed to keep the story moving while keeping the tone amped up. I felt everything worked out nicely to represent nearly every era — for example, with Starfire, it was fun to visit the 1983 comic book style and create action that had me reliving Crisis on Infinite Earths, Zero Hour, and just a dash of Elseworld style with this grouping even happening. The characters all play their part well, the art was beautiful and nostalgic, and the story is intriguing because I want to know how this team and event fits in with DC’s lore.
Generations Shattered will be a hard sell for some, considering what it’s up against, but I think it is a great treat that takes you back to the sci-fi style of comics and epic scope of fantasy that will delight longstanding fans and get newer fans to check their history out even more. I just hope this sticks the landing, with Generations Forged out on February 23, 2021.
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