Cyborg is one of the more untapped characters in the DCU partly because he’s relatively newer to the more established icons and because his powers are technologically based, allowing him to tap into things none of the others can (and requiring his tech to stay up-to-date to do so).
We check out the 3rd issue in the latest Rebirth series, but is it good?
Cyborg #3 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The DC summary reads:
“THE IMITATION OF LIFE” part four! The lives of Vic Stone and the S.T.A.R. Labs crew are thrown into chaos following an assault by a twisted mechanical menace that believes it’s Cyborg’s true father!
Why does this book matter?
Writer John Semper Jr. has written two very riveting issues of Cyborg already, which tied quite closely to the character’s humanity; Cyborg has doubts and a soul and this issue aims to make things a hell of a lot worse for him.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
But he’s your friend…
Cyborg #3 introduces a new concept (at least I think it’s new) concerning Cyborg’s control of his own body. The issue opens with him having a nightmare even though his brain is turned off (for maintenance reasons apparently). There’s no telling why this is happening, but it’s a neat element that makes him as much a threat to himself as any villain could be. The dilemma also creates a bit of psychological chaos for the character which only increases the drama of his internal turmoil. Semper Jr. also introduces a new character into Cyborg’s life that should reap benefits as far as fleshing out his backstory.
Will Conrad draws this issue with colors by Ivan Nunes and together they offer up an event quality book. The opening nightmare sequence pits the Justice League against Darkseid and it’s not only pretty, but action packed too. Darkseid’s laser blasts are incredible, blowing the clothes right off the characters (look for a Green Lantern butt shot ladies and gents!), and a lot of detail went into Cyborg’s armor being destroyed and a certain hero’s face melting off. All the tech and metal looks great too. In one scene Cyborg uses nanites to make his body appear normal and there’s a fun bit of morphing going on with nice details in his legs that sell the transformation.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Speaking of Cyborg’s transformation, it seems odd he suddenly can use this power to make himself look normal. Not two issues ago he was upset about not appearing normal in public and without any research or new knowledge he can shift his appearance? It’s rather shoehorned in to say the least.
The nightmares certainly add a new wrinkle to Cyborg’s psychosis, but they also serve to pad out the book far too much. There are two nightmares in this book and sure, they look great, they don’t progress the story and grow tiresome. One of the strengths of this series has been the great character work which drops off here.
Is It Good?
Cyborg #3 offers a new character, new powers, and a new wrinkle in Cyborg’s battle for his humanity. I can’t say it’s much more than a fight book for much of its length, and the new power comes out of nowhere too.