I’m not one for event comics. They tend towards being costly, all-encompassing and moreover they can be repetitive. Aside from a scant few events like Secret Wars, I’ve largely sworn off events, but one can be proven wrong. Dark Nights: Metal has had the requisite setup through its two lead-in one-shots which proved to be fun, but the main event has proven to be a treasure. Reuniting the team that while for me wasn’t always the Batman run I wanted, it did give us things like Jim Gordon as a mecha-Batman, which I’ll always treasure forever, but that heavy metal sensibility and ability to have fun gets married with the gonzo “everything goes” nature of Snyder’s All-Star Batman run which gives you a comic that’s a love letter to influences as far ranging as sword and sorcery comics, Grant Morrison, Neil Gaiman, and post-apocalyptic dystopias.
Snyder tends to do his best work when he’s free of the shackles of needing to keep to the continuity bible and for the most part Metal is relatively distinct from most DC continuity. But it’s also swimming in DC history. Of particular importance are Multiversity and The Return of Bruce Wayne and the particular plot point that got leaked. But all of that is set dressing for what’s ultimately a very fun and very metal (please no pun intended) about the Justice League preparing to fight an unimaginable threat from somewhere else, while Snyder’s primarily memorable for Batman, he does take a great deal of care to set up other players including the return of a character who really should have been back a long time ago.
The star of Metal for my money though is Greg Capullo. While he’s famous for his Batman run, Reborn showed off very different fantasy muscles for him, one that he puts to great use in this kickoff issue for Metal. The issue ranges from the prehistoric era, to Gotham, to Blackhawk Island, to Warworld and Capullo gives them all a gritty sheen. Jonathan Glapion and FCO Plascencia also do a fantastic job with inks and colors respectively, as a whole the book is a pitch-perfect translation of what worked for Batman bleeding over into this comic. As far as event comics go, or even just as a comic on its own, Metal is everything I’ve wanted from a comic. Adventure, action, the unknown, exploration, there’s a great deal to find here.
4 Metals out of 5