World Comic Book Review

10th April 2024

Harley Quinn and Batman #1 (review)

Harley Quinn and Batman #1 DC Comics, August 2017 Writer: Ty Templeton “Harley Quinn and Batman” #1’s title plainly communicates the marketing purpose of this new comic book series: American publisher DC comics is leveraging the newfound mainstream popularity of a character called “Harley Quinn”, buoyed by the 2016 blockbuster film which heavily marketed Australian … Read more

Injustice: Ground Zero (Review)

Injustice: Ground Zero
DC Comics, December 7, 2016-ongoing
Writers: Christopher Sebela, Brian Buccellato

In the spring of 2013, the Interactive Entertainment division of Warner Bros. (which owns DC Comics) and videogame developer NetherRealm Studios jointly developed and published a 3D Fighting-genre video game titled “Injustice: Gods Among Us” for a variety of hardware platforms. The game pits DC Comics’ most popular characters against each other in a series of one-on-one fights, using the backstory of an alternate timeline in which DC Comics’ paramount character property, Superman, has built a totalitarian government and put the entire planet under its control, while a small insurgent group consisting of other heroes, led by DC Comics’ other paramount character property, Batman, mount opposition.

While the video game was thin in terms of storytelling (as expected of a Fighting-genre videogame), DC Comics released an “Injustice: Gods Among Us” comic book series that serves as a prequel. The comic book series was fairly substantial, with the final chapter being released on September 2016, long after most gamers lost interest in the video game. With such a hefty back read, this comic book prequel can be inaccessible to a new reader, and will be an incomplete read to someone who is not interested in picking up and playing the video game (as the video game technically serves as the conclusion to the story.)

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Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #1 (review)

Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #1
DC Comics, December 21, 2016
Writer: Joshua Williamson

“Justice League vs. Suicide Squad” #1 is American publisher DC Comics’ blatant attempt to ride the momentum built by the 2016 “Suicide Squad” motion picture (which did not garner critical acclaim, but was commercially successful) and the hype currently being built around the upcoming “Justice League” motion picture. Both motion pictures were released by film studio Warner Brothers. Warner Brothers is the parent company of DC Comics. The marketing strategies of the two businesses are therefore broadly aligned.

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New Suicide Squad #21 (review)

New Suicide Squad #21 (review)
DC Comics, August 2016
Writer: Tim Seeley

On the back of our recent and very positive review of “Harley Quinn and the Suicide Squad April Fool’s Day Special“, we engaged in precisely the sort of consumer behaviour that US comic book publisher DC Comics wished us to do: we purchased the latest issue of DC Comics’ related publication, “New Suicide Squad”. DC Comics were hoping to ensnare new readers with this sales strategy, but in its execution, offering to new readers such a poorly crafted issue as an entry, the publisher fails entirely.

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