Injustice 2 is a comic that I decided to take a short break from reviewing in order to let the plot develop. And boy have things been kicking off from multiple angles. Not only has Batman had to deal with dissension within his own ranks but he recently lost one of his proteges, Tim Drake, right after saving him and the Teen Titans from the Phantom Zone at the hands of Zod. While Batman has been dealing with that we have also seen Ra’s Al Ghul, Black Adam and Wonder Woman making their own moves. Ra’s, in particular, has been busy in Gorilla City and moving into the next phase of his plans. That phase involves unleashing Amazo to “cleanse” the world as Ra’s sees it needs to be. Amazo are showed how unstoppable he is by killing Zod without breaking an oil sweat so who can even stop him? Let’s find that out with chapter 44 of Injustice 2
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Bruno Redondo and Mike S. Miller
Inker: Juan Albarran and Mike S. Miller
Colorist: Rex Lokus and J. Nanjan
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Synopsis: In Kahndaq during a sparring session Supergirl is able to knock Black Adam down with a solid punch to the face. When Supergirl helps Black Adam back up Wonder Woman punches her for showing mercy. Before Supergirl and Wonder Woman start fighting one of the guards gets their attention.
At the communication center Nightwing (Damian Wayne), along with Vixen and Animal Man, inform Wonder Woman, Supergirl and Black Adam about Ra’s Al Ghul unleashing Amazo on a city where it’ll kill millions.
Supergirl says she wants to go stop it but Wonder Woman and Black Adam tell her to stay back while they go help Nightwing.
Over in Delhi people stop Amazo just as it flies in. The people of Delhi have little time to react to it’s appearance as Amazo instantly start destroying the city and killing everyone with its heat vision.
At the Batcave Brother Eye informs Batman on all the death and destruction Amazo is causing in Delhi.
Batman immediately opens the emergency channels to broadcast to all the heroes in his network. Batman tells everyone about Amazo’s attack and that they will need everyone to respond to the attack.
At the Fortress of Solitude Wonder Girl finds Superboy (Conner Kent) meditating in order to fully recuperate from his heart surgery. Wonder Girl tells Superboy that they are needed as Amazo is attacking Delhi. Superboy is not sure he can do anything yet as he is still recovering from his heart surgery. Wonder Girl questions Superboy’s motivations but he says he will still join her to do what he can.
Jonathan Kent shows up and Superboy thinks he is there to stop him from leaving. Jonathan reminds Superboy that while he may be a Kryptonian he is also a Kent and they do not turn their backs on people who need help.
Martha Kent shows up and gives Superboy a costume she originally made for Superman back in his early days. While the costume (which is reminiscent of Clark Kent’s Superboy costume) is a bit tight Superboy wears it and takes off with Wonder Girl to a be a new symbol of hope. End of issue.
The Good: After all the big events that have happened in the last few chapters Injustice 2 Chapter 44 sets up a lot of moving pieces. While Chapter 44 is a set-up issue that does not mean we don’t see big things happen. The flint that lit the fire, in this case Amazo, for everyone on all sides of the Injustice 2 conflict to act continues to be built as an unstoppable force of nature. By setting Amazo in such a way Tom Taylor finds yet another way to create such an incredible threat that you are left wondering how anyone can survive.
From the moment Taylor introduced Amazo to the DC Injustice Universe the android was shown to be an unstoppable force of nature. Seeing the character easily kill Zod, in a way that was reminiscent to how he was killed of in Man of Steel, showed that Amazon can’t be stopped by just punching harder. Taylor further stressed that with how Damian Wayne talked about Amazo being someone that only Black Adam and Supergirl stand a chance at defeating. That all made Amazo decimating the city of Delhi and killing millions something where you are left wondering who actually stands a chance at defeating the android.
At the same time while Amazo is a threat that should concern everyone it was good to see Wonder Woman treat Damian’s warning as a challenge. While she stopped Supergirl from helping out due to keeping it a secret Taylor also showed that Damian’s description stoked Wonder Woman’s warrior instincts. This furthered the opening with Wonder Woman challenging Supergirl after the latter showed sympathy towards Black Adam during a sparring session. Supergirl’s reaction to being challenged and then being left behind showed that the character is still being defined as her heroic instincts are clashing with the weapon Wonder Woman and Black Adam are trying to make her in.
On the other side of things Taylor was also further able to show how Batman is using Brother Eye to see everything going on in the world. Batman acting quickly by informing everyone in his new Justice League about the Amazo threat was subtle but effective. The use of the emergency network that had Batman appear on every device showed how far reaching Brother Eye’s network reaches. While it was played for jokes Green Arrow asking if Batman can see them through the TV could be a warning sign of where the Brother Eye sub-plot may be going.
The Amazo threat also acted as a good spark to show that the world is in desperate need for a sign of hope. The need makes the return of Superboy, Conner Kent, an even bigger deal than it was before. As the sole “Super” character that will be fighting Amazo, Superboy has the chance to be a symbol of hope for the world. Taylor did a good job giving an added layer to this arc for Superboy by showing how the character is still affected by the last time he tried to defeat a major threat in Regime Superman.
That hesitation by Superboy made the presence of Jonathan and Martha Kent even more important to his character arc. Taylor showed that the Kents are just as important to Superboy as Superman. Jonathan mentioning how Kents don’t hide from saving people was a strong bonding moment for them. Placing an exclamation point on the motivation the Kent’s provided by having Martha giving Conner one of Superman’s original Superboy costume was a great moment to end Injustice 2 Chapter 44.
Though I am usually against multiple artist working on a single issue Bruno Redondo and Mike S. Miller did a great job blending their styles together. That is not surprising since Redondo and Miller have both worked on the Injustice comic with Taylor and have maintained a consistent look to the series. That was no different here as Redondo and Miller were given the scenes that maximized their artwork.
Miller he did a good job with showing where Supergirl is in her training. From her excitement in fighting Black Adam and Wonder Woman to her concern for the people of Delhi there was a good balance of who Supergirl is right now. Similarly, Miller was able to draw Wonder Woman in a way that she had a sinister aura around her that was furthered by how he drew the way she looked at people.
For Redondo, he was given the majority of Injustice 2 Chapter 44 and he was able to nail his part. Redondo got across how insanely powerful and scary Amazo is with how it easily destroyed Delhi and killed millions. That sense of danger made you want to see the android taken out immediately. At the same time, Redondo was able to get over the struggle that Conner Kent was feeling while he talked to Wonder Girl. That made his arc in this issue stronger as the moment he put on the Superboy costume had an aura of hope around it.
The Bad: Nothing.
Overall: Injustice 2 Chapter 44 was a strong issue that set-up a lot of moving parts that will be converging together to face off against Amazo. Tom Taylor did a fantastic job getting over the major threat to the world that Amazo presents. That menacing threat made the ending with Superboy deciding to return to action added a sense of hope to everything going on. And with both Batman and Wonder Woman’s forces answering the threat of Amazo there is a lot to look forward to what happens in the upcoming chapters of Injustice 2.