Wednesday, March 28, 2018

DOOMSDAY CLOCK #4 by Geoff Johns - Book Review

From the publisher: The series you thought you’d never see reaches its fourth issue with a shocking revelation about the aftermath of Ozymandias’ actions and how they reach into even the darkest corners of the DC Universe. Don’t miss the latest chapter by the acclaimed team of writer Geoff Johns and artist Gary Frank!

Doomsday Clock #4 by Geoff Johns continues the story that brings the Watchmen into the mainstream DC Universe. However, the main storyline is not really advanced in this issue. Instead, Johns chooses to tell the origin story of the new Rorschach, Reggie Long.

When Adrian Veidt tried to save mankind in Watchmen #12, he sent what looked to be an alien into the middle of New York. Several million people were killed, while many others who were nearby suffered severe mental trauma due to the unspeakable things they witnessed. Reggie Long was one such victim. However, his story doesn't begin there. Johns shows us excerpts from Long's life growing up, events that contributed to his becoming Rorschach, including the fact that Long's father was the psychologist treating Walter Kovacs, the original Rorschach, when he was in prison.

This issue is a character study in what goes into someone becoming a "hero". Reggie Long's motivation is definitely interesting. You can clearly see the steps that led to him becoming Rorschach. Much like with Kovacs, Long is a sympathetic figure driven to right a wrong. Unlike Kovacs, though, Long engenders actual sympathy from the reader and has some attachments to other people.

How this all fits in with the greater story of Doomsday Clock remains to be seen. On its own, its a good issue that provides backstory. If Johns can weave it in to the larger search for Dr. Manhattan, it may go from good to great.

I recommend Doomsday Clock #4 by Geoff Johns. Johns keeps the story moving little by little, and I'll stay with him through the endgame.

I received a preview copy of this book from DC Comics in exchange for an honest review.

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