100 Days, 100 Comics #34: ‘Blackest Night’ #4

Blackest Night #4You’re about to see me go on a “Blackest Night” binge for a few posts — which looking back isn’t all that out of character for this review series thus far. Four out of six books I picked up this week had “Blackest Night” in their titles (the other two were Dark Horse books). I can’t remember this happening since back in the “Age of Apocalypse” days, which were actually what strangled my adolescent billfold and made me give up comics (along with the “Clone Saga”) for about five years.

There was just the right amount of Black Lantern Firestorm in this, and I enjoyed the extra dose of JSA-oriented action toward the end. I’ve still got the same level of detachment reading through the Black Lantern/hero dialogs for the same reasons I’ve gone over earlier, but it was nice to make it through a full issue without another one of those extended, obtuse Indigo Tribe monologues.

Also, the Lex Luthor moment was just what I’ve been hoping to see, and my pal Ryan has instilled an appreciation for Dr. Polaris in me, so I hope the moment referenced in that sequence shows up in one of the other books in my stack.

The cover choice of the guy who’s not Serpentor but looks like him and who I don’t know because I don’t read that many DCU stories and want to call King Cobra but know that’s a Marvel character was an odd cover choice. One of the lagging problems for me is that this story and the actors are all over the place, and while I appreciate seeing up-close battles with the cowboy twins and other D characters, sacrificing full pages and covers to characters I’m not familiar with and who aren’t central to the plot or necessarily doing anything interesting has only further obfuscated the central storyline in the main series here.

That said, the Flash sequences here were totally on target — all peripheral action considered. Also, I must have missed when Azrael became a Black Lantern, because that came out of nowhere. If anyone reading this knows, chime in in the comments and let me know where to look. Anyway, we finally got to 100% with the power levels, and that moment definitely wasn’t a failure, though it was more of a base hit than a home run for the final spread (which I won’t spoil), but in the end this issue did what it needed, pretty much putting it in third place for me out of the series as a whole up until now.

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