This week brings us the newest issue of Convergence, along with 11 other tie-ins. I picked up the main title along with 5 of the peripheral stories. After reading them all, I came away with a pretty solid understanding of where the overall story is headed, and to be honest, it’s not what I was expecting.
When I first learned about Convergence, I assumed that the Convergence story would primarily take place within the 8 issues of the main title and that the plethora of 2 parters would be self contained stories. I figured DC had merely created Convergence as an excuse to show us characters from the past and that we would pick up where we last saw them. This isn’t the case at all. While Convergence does use characters from previous continuities, the characters have been altered by living under the dome for the last year. Some aspects of them are exactly as you remember, while others have changed as a direct result of their present situations. Like with anything, some of the stories were worth reading, and others not so much. I’ll leave it to my colleagues to fill you in on those details, but I felt it was pertinent to at least give you an inkling of what was going on in the overall scheme of things. Now to issue 1.
Convergence is nothing but one giant cage match. It’s Thunderdome. It’s Highlander (there can be only one). It’s The Hunger Games (they even call it that in one of the tie-ins). It’s Marvel Versus DC, but without the ability to actually vote on the outcome. (Can you imagine if DC actually let us vote on which world we wanted to see return to continuity?!?)
The issue itself isn’t a whole lot different than the story presented in #0. Instead of Telos monologing to Superman, this time he is telling that same story to all the heroes, who supposedly got fried by Darkseid’s Omega Beams at the end of Earth 2: World’s End. The information he provides us with is rather redundant. While there are a couple points that he elaborates on, the information he gives could have been easily deduced. Perhaps if you had not read #0 this would have been a more entertaining issue, but as it stands, it is just more of the same in this particular regard.
The script for this issue is brought to us by Jeff King and Scott Lobdell. When I saw that Scott’s name was attached to this issue, I had a sudden moment of panic, but it turned out that it was unwarranted. (Should I give King the sole credit for this issue actually being coherent or should I give Scott a break and give him some recognition too?) While the story is a little too similar to the previous one for my liking, the writers make up for that shortcoming by providing us with a little more action this time around (even if it was slightly irrelevant). This story also gives us a somewhat better understanding of Telos’ power levels and abilities. When Telos appears towards the end of the story, our heroes may have been blissfully ignorant, but I felt some level of concern for our intrepid band. As I already stated, Telos’ dialogue does end up being somewhat repetitive, but I still found it engaging due to the fact that it was spotted with a bunch of titles to other DC books.
Carlo Pagulayan handles art duties for this story and ends up delivering a solidly illustrated and beautifully laid out issue. He had a couple of two-page spreads that I thought were rather unique in the way they encouraged your eye to flow over the page. Generally speaking, his work just provided a lot more for you to look at. I had considered the fact that his backgrounds were kind of bland, but then remembered that this planet has little to no detail in the sky or in it’s Terra formations. (Kinda looks like the same location where the Road Runner and Wile E Coyote cartoons took place.)
Unlike last time, I don’t get the feeling that the content of this particular book warrants the price point that we were asked to pay out. Both this issue and last weeks were 4.99, but last time we were treated to 40 pages of material, and this time only 34. Granted, the omitted pages were from this week’s bonus material section where we learned about additional universes, but we are still paying the same amount for less content. I also noticed that there were a ton of layouts that encompassed two pages. 8 to be exact. And while some of those two page spreads were very nice, not all of them were. What we have to consider is that implementing this many 2 page spreads is a way to make a smaller story fill out more pages. Depending on how you look at it, it’s padding.
- Maybe this is just me coming up with crazy theories, but in Earth 2: World’s End, I though that when the Avatar of the White was telling Scott that he needed to focus his power into an object he held dear, he was taking about his other ring. Maybe Scott can’t call on the green, since it is gone, but perhaps down the line he might find he can call on power placed in reserve in his other ring that he didn’t even know was there.
- What did you guys think of those first 4 pages? When Telos says that the Injustice Universe was a failed experiment, I couldn’t help but hear that line as if it were being delivered by a DC executive. Which is odd, because Injustice has been very successful, so I am not sure why they would say that. After reading these pages, it actually got me so curious as to whether or not Injustice had been cancelled, that I stopped reading just to look it up.
- DC Versus Marvel Comics was a miniseries that ran in 1996. It was a collaboration between the two companies in which fans could vote on the outcome of 5 of the many fights that took place within the story.
- Telos makes several references to other DC books in his speech.
- Crisis on Infinite Earths (1985/86)
- Infinite Crisis (2005/6)
- Final Crisis (2008)
- Zero Hour (1994)
- Flashpoint (2011)
- Kingdom Come (1996)
- You want to know what happened to the heroes who disappeared from the last issue of Earth 2: World’s End.
- You didn’t understand what Telos was talking about in issue #0 and need to hear it again.
- You’re excited to find out that Convergence is essentially a DC version of “The Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny”
The story presented here doesn’t really move the plot forward too much, or provide us with any new information. In that respect, it’s kind of a doppelganger of issue #0. Carlo Pagulayan does deliver some genuinely worthwhile art, but other than that, there isn’t much material here worth sinking your teeth into.
SCORE: 6.5 / 10