Man, that’s a great cover. Just take a minute and appreciate it. It’s our first look at Earth 2’s Doctor Fate, and he looks fantastic. From the powerful and bright beams of light, to the Egyptian hieroglyphics and imagery in the background, to Fate himself, this cover alone sold me on buying this book. This is the coolest version of Fate that I’ve personally seen, and the contrast between the solid blackness and extremely intricate gold plating of his armor really makes Fate jump off the page.
Jay Garrick and Khalid Ben-Hassin are exploring The Tower of Fate, searching for the helmet of Nabu in order to free Jay’s mother from the clutches of a very talkative Wotan. “The Tower of Fate, Part 2” opens up with a flashback to ancient Egypt, where Nabu and Wotan are dueling for magical supremacy. Wotan is a girl, apparently, and her(?) power is being able to transfer her memories to other bodies. This explains how Wotan can be in different bodies but not die. There’s a really cool magical battle, with Nabu pulling out all the stops to defeat Wotan.
Wotan still won’t shut up, and I’m confused why he’s being so chatty with Flash’s mother. I understand that she’s your hostage, Wotan, and there’s probably a lot of awkward silence between you two, but do you have to give her your entire history and game plan when odds are you’re just going to double-cross Flash and Khalid anyway? Maybe Wotan’s just been lonely.
Inside the Tower of Fate, Jay and Khalid are trying to survive with The Great Beast on their tails. Without going into the details, Khalid finds the helm of Nabu, and the scenes during and following his transformation into Doctor Fate are astounding. The artwork throughout this entire book has been some of my favorite in the entire series so far, and if Doctor Fate keeps being drawn with the same quality as this issue, I hope he’s in every issue.
There is also a brief, but totally unnecessary cut to Dherain, where Steppenwolf and Fury plan their next move.
Flash is easily becoming my favorite character in this series. His attitude is never sugar-coating or putting up a false front in order to seem stronger than he is. He understands his limitations and accepts his weaknesses, but he’s always trying to overcome them. He’s been very well done by James Robinson, who is tapping what it truly means to be a hero – it’s alright to be afraid, but don’t let it stop you from doing the right thing.
- Apparently, Flash inspired him to take up the responsibility of being a hero and accepting the burden of bearing Nabu’s helmet. More reason to like Flash, along with him fighting The Great Beast valiantly.
- There really weren’t many Spoilers for this issue, the cover clearly shows Doctor Fate in all his glory, so it really isn’t a Spoiler that he takes up the helmet.
- Apparently, over time, Nabu’s voice will fade, merging with Khalid and allowing Khalid more and more control over Nabu’s power. I like that dynamic a lot more than some incarnations of Nabu.
- Apparently Khalid got to add the “Doctor” onto Doctor Fate, in recognition of his doctorate degree.
- Fun throwback mention: Khalid’s guardian was Kent Nelson, who seemingly died under strange circumstances. Kent Nelson was the original Doctor Fate starting in 1940.
Favorite Quote: “God, man, you are so brave.” “No, I’m not. I just made a promise to a dying god that I’d try to be.” – Khalid and Flash.
- Doctor Fate is one of your favorite heroes.
- You appreciate excellent artwork.
- You like when heroes inspire one another.
One of my favorite issues of this series so far, the Nabu/Khalid dynamic this issue creates an excellent story, good action, and exceptional artwork. The completely unnecessary cut to Dherain is the only detracting factor I could find in this issue.