Comic Book Review: Justice League Dark #4
I’m not going to lie, most times I might wait out a story like this when it involves me having to pick up an extra book or two in order to keep up. However, the Witching Hour has made this tedious task worthwhile so far. I mean, if you are someone who loves a good scare and the exploration into the magical corner of the DC Universe, then what is there to really complain about at the end of the day? You are getting an awesome story told through three series and between them never feel as though you are missing something from the other.
So for those who read Witching Hour #1 first, then Wonder Woman #56, this is a very exciting issue to look forward to when we are looking at our next big conflict for the Justice League Dark team. Not only this, but we get to see if it really is foolish for Wonder Woman to try to hack her way into controlling the Witch-Mark. I have to say that everything leading up to this point has been very engaging when there is this argument of who really understand what is at stake and how to approach this situation. You get how reserves Zatanna is about everything that might seem too risky, and you also can’t help but agree with the boldness of Wonder Woman to be more quick and decisive. When no one is truly prepared for the dangers of Hecate, any one of them could be wrong in what happens next. The action was intense, and visually satisfying, though it was what you took from this engagement that stood out most. Both of them you could say were right and wrong. A damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation. It really adds to the thrill of simply bracing yourself for the worst that you know is regardless what you have to look forward to.
Following Manitou Dawn under the control of Hecate was terrifying. I’m glad that not every one of the Witch-Marked ended up like the last one who quickly burned up after her use. Being able to step into the shoes of someone who is actually used the way Manitou is was terrifying for the fact that we are able to understand what it feels like for someone who is stripped of their free will to commit the worst offense for someone like theirself. The narration made sure to see to that. Tynion even took things a step further to finally give us more of an active voice for Hecate. This made a big difference when being in part three meant that we needed a stronger perspective taken from the person who is orchestrating this madness. To come after Rama Krishna of all places on Earth, that had to come with greater depth towards establishing her drive to be bold enough to engage with beings like Rama Krishna. I felt more comfortable with what I knew about this conflict hearing the words come from her own mouth. The words were chilling and they carried through to the end of the issue. Particularly when as we know, this issue has been leading us into the danger that the Parliament of Trees face as another source of great magic on Earth.
Speaking of the narration above, that I think is something to give recognition to for the way it sets up the tone of this story. The things that would take too much time from plot progression was wisely put into the narration of events. Nothing was left to imagination when it came to what these characters were experiencing in said moments, or what we should anticipate as well.
The interior art for this issue was masterful. Everything about the quality of work that this art team brings to the table fully embraces the horror of this story. If there wasn’t such a good story here, I honestly could go along for the rise just because the visually grab your attention with every flip of the page. So much just pops out at you from the dark tones to the blinding brilliance of the colors which capture the level of magic unleashed in this stage of the battle for magic. One again I was blown away by the unique coloring of the Witch-Marked. Such a beautiful glow that these individuals take on, and the burst of colors when they unleash that power is even better. Who knew a clashing of warm and cold colors could work so well? It added to the excitement when there were two more of them who each took on unique appearances when activated too. What stood out as much as that is the form they gave to both Hecate and Rama Krishna. Giving them a form to clash really elevated the conflict visually. These developments captivate us for the true understanding of the powerful elements at play.
Justice League Dark #4 really gave us something to fear about the horrors that Hecate has in store for this world. It was one thing to know that she wanted to burn everything to remake the world for herself, but it was another thing entirely to grasp what it means for her to attack at the heart of everything magic. The panic, the loss, the chaos, all these things were the perfect recipe for a memorable third chapter to the Witching Hour.