DC Comics has been fostering the growth of new artists and writers over the last two years, which is an exciting development for anyone interested in new voices in the comic book industry. Now it’s our chance to read what they’ve cooked up, but is it good?
New Talent Showcase #1 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The full summary reads:
In this new one-shot, Wonder Woman unleashes her true god of war against a parade of monsters! Superman discovers a new threat that might be bigger and badder than The Joker himself! Hawkgirl solves crimes in the weird weapons unit for the GCPD! Carol Ferris and Kyle Rayner fight about ice cream in space! You’ll find all of this and so much more in NEW TALENT SHOWCASE #1, where recent graduate writers from the inaugural DC Talent Development workshop showcase some of their strongest work yet! See what they’ve learned from masters of the craft Scott Snyder, Jim Lee and Klaus Janson.
Why does this book matter?
You get 9 stories (70 pages worth) for 8 bucks. That’s less than a dollar per story, which if you ask me is a good deal!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Deadman is delectably different.
There’s a lot to enjoy in this comic and while most end with cliffhangers that leave you wanting more, there’s an eclectic mix of art styles and characters. Each story offers a different slice of the DCU from Hellblazer entering a bar in Hell, to Superman fighting a Joker robot. Some stories kickstart a new threat, while others remind us where heroes are in their respective storylines (like Wonder Woman as the “God(des) of War.”). Because there are so many different stories some might appeal more than others, though I found most to be interesting for different reasons.
One of the best focuses on Wonder Woman and Catwoman teaming up. Emma Beeby writes this story with art by Minkyu Jung and colors by Trish Mulvihill. The story opens with a bit of misdirection, introduces a villain and the current state of the world of the gods, and concludes with high stakes. The characters look fantastic on top of this and the dynamic of these characters is intriguing. I’m looking forward to seeing how this story unfolds.
The next story is by Michael McMillian and Juan Ferreyra, a Superman-centric tale which looks jaw-droppingly good. Ferreyra has been doing fantastic stuff on Green Arrow and this story is no different. The colors are great, an alien encounter is spectacular, and the Joker robot sequence is fun. One of the cooler elements of this story is how McMillian introduces new ideas for the heroes. Just when you think you know a character they have new things to offer!
The Hellblazer story offers up some fun detective work (with nice art by Siya Oum), Wonder Woman’s solo story by Via Ayala and art by Khary Randolph has a manga-styled angular look that’s filled with kinetic energy, and a Green Lantern story written by Michael Moreci and art by Barnaby Bagenda introduces a new threat and high stakes for the heroes. There’s also a very fun Deadman story written by Christopher Sebela with art by David Messina that is a reminder of the uniqueness of the character. These are a few of my favorites, but I’m sure others will find lot’s of things to enjoy in others as well.
It can’t be perfect can it?
They can’t all be great, and the Power Girl wasn’t up to snuff in a few ways, partly because the plot is too convoluted. I never really cared about the character, which didn’t help when the cliffhanger dropped.
Another story, focused on Hawkgirl, didn’t quite sell me on its buy in, through the idea is sound. The art has a more sketchy look that appeared too messy for my tastes too.
Is It Good?
If you’re a fan of the DC universe you shouldn’t miss New Talent Showcase #1. There are plenty of interesting and varying stories to dig into and most end with a tantalizing cliffhanger which will make you want to come back for more. There are many fan favorite appearances with plenty of great art too.