The latest issue of Justice League by Geoff Johns and a team of four artists is an oddly paced one that will be more rewarding for those who are well-versed in DC’s less popular heroes.

The comic begins with The Doom Patrol’s Karma and Scott Fischer rummaging through the rubble of what used to be Denver, Colorado. As they search for survivors, the two characters have an exposition-heavy conversation that details who they are, what their powers are, how they got their powers, and what’s happened in Forever Evil so far. Geoff Johns tries to make the dialogue sound natural, but with that much name-dropping it just can’t. Then we get into some action when Johnny Quick and Atomica show up and it’s all quite exciting, although I would like to see more from the other members of the Crime Syndicate since we’ve already seen Q & A cause the most damage while everyone else just sort of lounges about their hideout.

While the tease of an all-new Doom Patrol is fun, the main reason we’re all here is to see how exactly Cyborg will rise up and lead the fight against the villains when he is basically just a head and elbow plugged into a life support machine at this point. And now that we only have half a comic book left, we’re gonna need a montage. It’s unclear how many hours, days, weeks, months, etc. it takes to rebuild and fully upgrade Cyborg, but that’s the power of the montage! During this sequence, readers will learn about all of Cyborg 2.0’s new weapons and weaknesses, and we also get a nice heart-to-heart scene between our hero and his father.

Spoiler
I really liked the moment where Cyborg takes pleasure in the silence caused by the world-wide blackout. For the first time in years he isn’t being bombarded by information and can feel human again.

It’s a comic that’s very much focused on developing characters and delivering a lot of information quickly rather than a comic that’s concerned with moving those characters forward. If you like Cyborg and The Doom Patrol then I think you’re going to absolutely love this. For one, it’s going to make you hopeful that DC has a new series in mind for the Doom Patrol and secondly, Cyborg has had a lot of cool moments in the New 52 as a robot (seriously, he’s been one of the most useful members of the Justice League by far), but what he needed was more scenes that actually made us care for him as a human being. After Cyborg upgrades and then reconciles with his father, there are only 4 pages left to go on the offensive against The Crime Syndicate so it won’t be until next month that we see him turn the tide.

When it comes to the artwork, it looks great despite there being so many cooks in the kitchen. Ivan Reis did the layouts while Joe Prado, Jesus Merino, and Vicente Cifuentes performed finishes and Rod Reis colored. The opening sequence with the Doom Patrol looks the best by far because there’s something visually interesting on display as we see dynamic images of super-speed, shrinking, major explosions, and an especially nasty attack by Atomica.The home of Caulder is also shown for a page and it’s filled with many little details that fans be sure to get excited about. However, the majority of the comic is actually made up of close-ups of the injured Cyborg, his distraught father, and various metal parts being welded together. Also, there was a lettering mistake that distracted from what should have been the book’s most impressive two-page spread: “This it, Victor. This is the Red Room.”

I really like the new look of Cyborg. It’s much sleeker and I think it’ll help him fit in a little better when standing side-by-side with the rest of the Justice League. However, while the new suit is a major plot point, 4 pages after it is revealed there is a panel where it looks like he’s wearing the old suit again. His shoulders are bulky, he has the big neck-collar/brace, and his boots are huge again. Maybe all of his plating pops out when he shoots his hand-cannons or maybe the artists just made a mistake.

Recommended If…

  • Cyborg is one of your favorite members of the Justice League
  • You need your Forever Evil fix
  • The idea of a New 52 Doom Patrol excites you
  • You’re okay with an exposition heavy issue
  • You’d also be interested in learning more about a New 52 version of the team called
    Spoiler
    The Metal Men

Overall

Issue #27 spends its first half laying the groundwork for a Doom Patrol title (which is fun but still felt a bit like we lost focus for a moment) and the second half updating Cyborg’s look and giving him a new sense of purpose for the journey to come. There are some really cool moments here (especially if you’re a fan of Cyborg and DC’s more retro heroes) and the artwork looks nice throughout but the dialogue gets awfully heavy-handed.  It would’ve been a far better read if every little detail didn’t have to be spelled out for the reader, but it’s still quite fun and it enriched Cyborg’s character

SCORE: 7.5/10