DC has taken a crossover nobody saw coming and made it deeply meaningful.
The Looney Tunes villains are dropping into the DC universe this week with a plethora of crossovers. In one of the most anticipated, Lex Luthor and Porky the Pig cross paths to help build their corporate greed.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
Facing financial and personal ruin, a desperate Porky Pig applies for and gets and entry-level position with LexCorp. Grateful to his new benefactor, Porky becomes Luthor’s most loyal employee and defender. But when a major scandal breaks in the news and Lex is called before a Congressional Committee, guess who is about to be offered up as the sacrificial pig?
Why does this matter?
Mark Russell of The Flintstones fame is writing so you know it’ll be at once funny and political. Given the business savvy of both characters, prepare for a corporate greed narrative. The backup is similar to other Looney Tunes and DC crossovers as it relishes in a cartoony vibe.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Corporations have the same rights as people and yet they can get away with criminal acts that would lock anyone up. It’s a concept underlying the entire main story written by Russell with art by Brad Walker. The story opens with Porky the Pig enjoying the success of his company that is similar to Bitcoin. Things fail for him and he’s soon working directly with Lex Luthor thanks to a chance encounter. As the story progresses we learn more about Lex’s company — that Porky is helping manage — as well as the office politics in Porky’s life. By the end of the story, it’s made clear CEOs can skirt the system even when they’re called out for directly violating moral and ethical boundaries. It’s a story that will make you think especially in this day and age where social media takes up so much of our lives.
The backup story is written by Jim Fanning with pencils by John Loter and focuses on Porky the Pig attempting to sell office supplies to Lex Luthor. Porky’s stutter is used as a gag as well as his persistence to make a sale. Lex is played up as an evil villain and Porky’s ignorance is played up too. As the story progresses a certain Superman comes into focus as far as Lex’s plans go. This is very close to what you might see on a Saturday morning cartoon.
The visuals in the backup are delightful with their own style but still done in a cartoony way. Fanning uses a silhouette technique for an action sequence that comes off well. Walker, meanwhile, does a great job rendering the main story as realistically as possible. You will believe four-foot tall pigs exist in the DC universe.
It can’t be perfect can it?
The main story is so focused on the political aspects of corporations it’s almost as if it didn’t need Lex or Porky at all. It’s a comic about two businessmen with zero superhero aspects entwined with the narrative. The characters are definitely represented well, but I was surprised it was so far removed from its place in the DC universe.
The backup is good, but I found a lot of the humor to run on too long. It gets repetitive and it’s not hard to see where it’s going with its story.
Is it good?
A good crossover that delivers a strong message about corporate greed and the ethical violations they so easily get away with. The issue as a whole is a great example of how DC has taken a crossover nobody saw coming and made it deeply meaningful.