52 #21 Review

The Revolution wasn’t that impressed with the last issue of 52. I found it to be a bit boring and slow. It read like filler. However, 52 has been an excellent title and I’m sure that 52 #21 is going to be a good read. Let’s do this review.

Creative Team
Writers: Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison, Greg Rucka and Mark Waid
Penciler: Joe Bennett
Inker: Jack Jadsen

Art Rating: 6 Night Girls out of 10
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: Week 21, Day 1: We see Natasha asking Lex to allow Eliza, the speedster codenamed Trajectory, back onto the team. Since Lex loves Natasha so much he agrees to her request. We shift to Natasha telling Eliza the good news. We learn that Eliza is a huge Flash fan and loves all the versions of the Flash and Kid Flash. Eliza is also a big fan of the Teen Titans. Eliza wants to be the next Kid Flash and join the Teen Titans one day.

Week 21, Day 2: We cut to Ralph Dibny and the helmet of Dr. Fate at the Gates of the Underworld. Ralph poured gingold down the gullet of the sleeping demon guarding the gates. Ralph then ties the demon into a knot and threatens to not untie him and when the gingold wears off, the demon’s bones will harden and snap and puncture all of his internal organs. The demon agrees to open the gates to the Underworld in turn for Ralph untying him from a knot.

Week 21, Day 3: We shift to Lex Luthor’s control room where all his scientists are monitoring the members of his super team. Lex has sent his new team to go take down the new and improved Blockbuster. We learn that Lex’s new team is called Infinity Inc.! Infinity Inc. lock horns with Blockbuster. Lex orders his scientists to dial down Blockbuster’s powers and increase Trajectory’s powers. Trajectory then takes down Blockbuster and Natasha binds him in a light band.

The new Teen Titans then arrive on the scene. The Titans consist of Zatara, Power Boy, Little Barda, Raven and Beast Boy. Beast Boy is less than thrilled that Lex purchased the Pemberton Estate which owned the rights to the name “Infinity Inc.” This new Infinity Inc. also boasts a new Nuklon and a new Skyman. The Titans and Infinity Inc. begin a little trash talking between the various members. Beast Boy asks Natasha why she would work with someone like Lex Luthor.

Lex then commands his scientists to boost Blockbuster’s powers. Blockbuster then escapes from Natasha’s light band. Trajectory locks horns with Blockbuster and starts pounding on him. Lex then commands the scientists to turn off Trajectory’s powers. Blockbuster then punches Trajectory and kills her instantly.

Week 21, Day 6: We cut to Trajectory’s funeral. The Teen Titans are present at the funeral. Hot Spot tells Beast Boy that the team thing isn’t working for him and that he is quitting the Titans. Power Boy and Little Barda then tell Beast Boy that they are leaving the team since they aren’t getting any good training or exposure.

John Irons then confronts Natasha. Natasha snaps on him and tells him to leave her alone. Beast Boy then talks to Irons and tells him that something isn’t right and asks Irons if the Titans can help him.

Week 21, Day 7: We shift to Australia. We see some mechanic named Johnny Warrawa who has just finished rebuilding Red Tornado out of various automobile and motorcycle parts from the junkyard. End of issue
The Good: 52 #21 was much better than the last issue! The boys at DC got back on track and delivered an extremely exciting issue. The Lex Luthor storyline dominated this issue and I’m glad. We haven’t seen much development of this plotline in a while, so it was great to see what Lex is up to.

Unlike last issue, 52 #21 was full of interesting teases and surprises. The pacing of this issue was just right. We got plenty of action with the big fight scene that led to Trajectory’s death. The dialogue was well done and this issue had a great flow to it. This issue had a nice balance of action and drama making for an enjoyable read.

The big surprise was unveiling that Lex Luthor’s new team is called Infinity Inc. What a great move by the writers. I’m sure that many long time fans of Infinite Inc. won’t be thrilled by this move. I like it. Infinity Inc. has been a dead property for a long time. At least DC is finally doing something with the name. I like that we have a new Nuklon and a Skyman. To me, this is Lex Luthor’s way of sticking it to all the big name heroes of the JSA by stealing their legacy and attaching it to his creation. This is why I like it so much.

The big surprise is that Lex can control the powers of his team members. He can either dial up or dial down their powers. That is sick. Lex is the biggest control freak and the members of Infinity Inc. are truly his puppets. Watching Lex allow Trajectory to get killed was sick. But, that is why I love Lex Luthor so much. This scene does a nice job illustrating that Lex never gives anything without a string attached to it. These heroes have their powers because of Lex and he and only he along will decide how and when they use them.

The appearance of the Teen Titans was cool. We got to see the members of the Titans that have been hinted to over in the Teen Titans comic. Power Boy and Little Barda are pretty interesting. They both are connected with the New Gods. I’d be interested in learning more about these two characters. I’m glad that the writers are finally working the Titans into the mix on 52. With the funeral scene, the writers are bringing Steel together with the Titans to deal with Lex Luthor. This was a good addition and will only serve to make the Lex Luthor plotline even more interesting.

I liked the small bit we got on Ralph’s plotline. It was unusual to see such an aggressive and kick-ass Ralph Dibny! I guess his therapy that he mentions in his blog is really working for him. I liked seeing Ralph with some edge to his personality. This was the most aggressive tough side of Ralph that I have seen before. It was a neat twist.

The ending to this issue was well done. We get a shot of a junkyard version of the Red Tornado. It is about time that Red Tornado’s plotline get further developed. Red Tornado clearly has critical information inside of him concerning who or what is the “52.” This ending was a nice hook that got me ready for the next issue. I can’t wait to see where the writers take this plotline.

The Bad: No complaints. This was a good issue.

Overall: 52 #21 was a great rebound from the last issue. I had faith that the writers would deliver a strong issue after last issue that read more like filler than anything else. We got treated to plenty of drama and action. 52 continues to be one hell of a ride. The fact that the writers are able to turn out a weekly title that is so dependable and entertaining is incredible. DC has disappointed me with many of their other new One Year Later titles, but they have certainly impressed me with their work on 52.