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'DC: Mech' #5: review
DC Comics

Comic Books

‘DC: Mech’ #5: review

DC: Mech continues to be style over substance.

There is no denying the cool factor of putting the Justice League in towering mechs reminiscent of Neon Genesis Evangelion or Mobile Suit Gundam. It’s a fun concept on the surface, but over the last four issues of DC: Mech, the cracks in the armor have begun to show. Releasing this week, DC: Mech #5 continues the series trend of being an enjoyable, if somewhat forgettable, read.

DC: Mech is an origin story for this world’s justice league, the Justice Squadron, coming together in their building-size mechs to stop an imminent invasion from Darkseid and the forces of Apokolips… who are also in mechs. Writer Kenny Porter and artist Baldemar Rivas want to give us some of that exciting robot-on-robot battle, which unfortunately means some other areas are lacking.

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The story so far has felt surface-level and filled with classic tropes from stories of teams forming. The series is geared towards a younger audience, with a simple message that working together is always the better choice. The story is simple, allowing lots of space for Baldemar’s kinetic action scenes to take over, and like previous issues, DC: Mech #5 is filled to the brim with them and not a lot of substance.

Issue #5 is very much the Green Lanterns’ issue. Hal and John are centre stage in their co-piloted green mech. They undoubtedly have one of the coolest concepts in the series, with John controlling the ring which powers the suit and Hal piloting it. It’s a neat play on the Pacific Rim-esque drifting of two pilots. Both pilots are struggling to find balance in their partnership, and it’s an interesting idea, even if it is somewhat rushed. What’s lacking is the weight of these story moments.

DC: Mech #5
DC Comics

The issues rush from one beat to the next, almost like skipping through a YouTube video. It’s not so much that the characters’ choices or story beats don’t make sense; it just feels like there isn’t any time to breathe when they’re happening. Issue #5 has a particular moment where the emotional punch is lost when the characters move on two panels after the reveal.

Baldemar continues creating fun and exciting battle scenes for our mechanized heroes. Issue #5 is mainly in space, meaning we lose the sense of scale we saw when the robots walked through cities and farms. However, the battle between the Green Lantern and kalibak is as engaging as ever. Also, major props to Mike Spicer for making the darks of space alive with color and energy. The artwork continues to be the highlight of the series; the impact is just lost in the scenes outside of the mechs.

It can be tough to balance action and story, especially when dealing with the coolness of having Batman control a Bat-Mech. But the rush to see more action limits the story as a whole. The story keeps moving, and the scenes outside the mechs seem to be there to get the character back into the mechs. In issue #3, the Green Lanterns tell Superman off for being a reckless endangerment to the team, only for themselves to make a similar decision in issue #5. 

My biggest problem with DC: Mech is that I wish it had more time to explore this exciting world that Porter has created. DC: Mech #5 highlights the main problem with the series: It’s a fun action book and not much else. The series remains a fun concept and an overall enjoyable series. Still, unfortunately, the surface-level story keeps this alternate universe tale from ever rising to the heights of the towering mechs within the panels.

'DC: Mech' #5: review
‘DC: Mech’ #5: review
DC: Mech #5
Full of fun mecha robot action, but lacking the substance outside of the machines, DC: Mech continues to be style over substance.
Reader Rating1 Vote
9
Fun mech action great for young readers
An interesting and unique alternate DC Universe
Emotional moments are undercut by the fast pacing
Surface level character moments
6
Average
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