Title: DC Universe Online Legends #1
Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Marv Wolfman and Tony Bedard
Artist: Howard Porter and Livesay, Adriana Melo and Norman Lee
Colors: Carie Strachan
Letters: Wes Abbott
Release Date: 2/2/11
Lex Luthor has finally won his war against Superman. With the final and decisive strike, he killed both humanity’s savior and any chance for a future. With Brainiac ready to catalog and destroy the Earth, Luthor must find a way to turn back the tide, and possibly time, and prevent such a catastrophe to occur. In this comic book adaptation of the new online game, DC Comics looks into Luthor’s past and the heroes’ futures. Can the world prevent the invasion of Brainiac?
DC Comics is all about synergy, and of course, this means a comic book tie-in to the new online game, DC Universe Online. Set in the same storyline as the game (but not any of the identifiable 52 Earths, thanks to too many contradictions), this books goal is to expand on the events found in the title. The game was heavily promoted with the the first trailer featuring Lex Luthor’s final war against the superheroes, defeating Superman in the process, but losing the world to Brainiac. The first issue of this series picks up at that same moment, with Luthor gloating over the corpse of Kal-El, only to see Brainiac’s armada flying in to conquer the remains of Earth. While the trailer shows that Lex manages to make it back in time to fix things, the issue leaves you with Lex in the future… with his motley crew of a semi-Justice League.
At it’s heart, it’s a video game tie-in, but Wolfman is one of the legends of the comic book industry, creating both iconic eras for the Teen Titans, alongside the game-changing Crisis On Infinite Earths. Wolfman manages to channel a little bit of that Crisis energy, giving the book a full-on feeling of importance and weight. It feels much like an event book, which is only hampered by the fact that it has no bearing on DC’s New Earth timeline. At the end of the book, we’re left with a ragtag team of Dr. Fate, Solomon Grundy, Black Canary, Power Girl, Mr. Freeze, Blue Beetle, The Atom, and August General In Iron. This is a team I want to see try to save the world. While the art neither breaks out or breaks down, it serves the purposes of showing a downtrodden future, and gets the iconic nature of the few actual icons in the book down.
DC Universe Online Legends is an enjoyable read, and a good Elseworlds book, if anything. Wolfman’s writing is always up to the task, and it’s a peek into a world that will be expanded on in the games, and vice versa. Still, it’s almost hampered by the fact it’s a tie-in to a game, as many people will skip over the book fearing it’s impossibility to get into unless they play the game. Additionally, it’s lack of bearing on the ongoing world limits it’s importance. If you want an important DC book, this is not it. If you want a Side-Crisis On Earth-Sony that’s a fun read, go for it.