With the exception of Arkham Unhinged, DC’s Digital First comics have been some of the best, most consistent titles I’ve reviewed. Batman: Li’l Gotham will be ending next month (digitally anyway, we still have a few more months of print issues remaining) and it’s always been a joy, Batman Beyond Universe is a gripping and fun read, Batman ’66 is one of the funniest and most well illustrated comics I pick up, and Legends of the Dark Knight is fresh and new with every installment. And while you might think that a tie-in based on the video game fighter genre would be pathetic, Injustice: Gods Among Us is one of the most exciting, emotional, and unpredictable books I’m currently reading. Yes, this Superman is a complete psychopath, but he’s also the Superman of another dimension so he’s not our Superman. Move past that and what you’ll see is an epic in every sense of the word.

In issue #10, Batman learned about Lex Luthor and Superman’s plan to build an army using pills that enhance an individual with Krytponian-like strength. In issue #11, the comic we are reviewing now, Batman sets into motion a plan to infiltrate The Fortress of Solitude, retrieve Luthor’s tech, and even the odds against Superman’s rising regime. It goes disastrously and makes for an edge-of-your-seat read from start to finish. Since this is the penultimate chapter in the series (before it returns in 2014 as “Injustice: Year Two”) I’ll put my criticisms and comments in spoiler tags so as not to spoil anything major for you. Clearly, the book is recommended so you could easily stop reading the review now.

Spoiler

  • This issue had a really great build what with Batman urging the president to send the armada to the Korean peninsula and the argument among the rebels, plus the banter between Green Arrow and Black Canary added some much-needed levity to a very heavy situation
  • I found it a little too convenient that we totally skipped over HOW Catwoman picked the lock to the Fortress of Solitude. I think Catwoman should be depicted as a world-class thief, but picking the lock of The Fortress of Solitude is definitely out of her league
  • I was hoping for a more visually impressive battle between the powerhouses of Superman and Captain Atom. It was good, but when you have characters of that magnitude who will likely never throw-down again in another comic anytime soon… yeah, I definitely wanted more
  • One of the best things about this issue is that it made it clearer why The Flash would stand with Superman’s regime. As far as he knows, Batman’s plan went almost perfectly and he was willing to kill Wonder Woman and Superman and anyone else in his way, so to him Batman has crossed the line to become something more despicable
  • Superman was shown to be an even more weak-minded lunatic than he was in previous installments
  • Green Arrow’s death was very moving. I wish Dick Grayson had gone out in such style (see: Damian: Son of Batman #2)

The artwork, as usual gets rather iffy. Three different artists take turns on this one and so quality varies throughout the book and the shift between their respective segments is noticeable. While there are some really good-looking scenes, there are also a number of weird faces and bodies (two female characters look much larger than usual on the second-to-last page) and there is a panel in which someone is supposed to be crying out in anger yet they are drawn with their lips pursed. Another problem I had with the visuals and something I hope is fixed in time for the next graphic novel release is some unnecessary exposition left-over from the digital version. After a very big battle, it’s apparent that what we saw was the conclusion of a weekly digital release. So the next page picks up at the start of another digital release, which features some text summarizing the battle. That works fine for digital, but seeing the fight on one page and then turning that page to see an explanation of it? It doesn’t work well in the printed format and should be cut.

Recommended If…

  • You’ve been following this series from the start
  • Green Arrow is your favorite character
  • You want to see psycho Superman fight one of the most powerful characters in the DC Universe
  • Big changes are what you want to see. Big, big changes

Overall

Action-packed as usual with an added emotional punch. Watching Batman’s elaborate plan to infiltrate the Fortress of Solitude fall apart at the seams makes for a very entertaining read.

SCORE: 8.5/10