“Welcome to Eclipso”
Writer: Tim Seeley
Artist: Scot Eaton
Major Spoiler Warning
Also Includes Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #5 Spoilers
After the ending of Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #5 where Eclipso makes an appearance and begins to basically destroy the world, I was excited to see that this particular tie-in issue explored that as almost a direct follow-up; if you read Justice League #13 immediately after Justice League vs. Suicide Squad #5, there would almost be no story gap whatsoever. Not only did this further exploration of Eclipso’s destruction interest me, but we are immediately shown Steve Trevor as this book’s protagonist, which is something I can definitely get behind. This story was here to do one thing: show you the terrible state of the world, and in that sense, it delivered wholeheartedly. However, I can’t help but take some issue with the way it was told.
Despite Tim Seeley having written this book, this didn’t feel like the same writing from his current Nightwing series. I mean, this is probably a good thing considering Steve and Dick are quite dissimilar as protagonists go, but what I’m trying to say is that this felt way off-base for something Seeley should’ve written. There were actually some very disturbing panels scattered throughout this book, which didn’t feel like Seeley or the Justice League series. It felt like there was a definite intent to add shock value to most of this issue, and it equal parts worked and make me feel ill. Steve is faced with the prospect of being the last man on Earth who hasn’t been infected, but by the end of the book we see Eclipso take over him and his family, so my question is: what was the point?
I understand the idea of having a doomed protagonist, and the whole purpose of this book was to show that no one is safe from Eclipso, but then couldn’t this have been done with anyone? Why did it have to be Steve Trevor? It would have made more sense for this book to follow someone who is actually a sociopath, because that is exactly how Steve is portrayed here. Again, circumstantially, this makes sense, but let me provide you with an example. In the early pages of this book, Steve shoots dead a woman who has been taken over, and then thinks to himself “she’s a victim” However, later on, upon discovering his niece and nephew have been infected, tells himself “they’re gone. My sweet niece and nephew. Even if they can be cured, they’ll never…I’ll never be able to look at them again” and aims the gun to shoot them without a second thought. This may seem logical given the state of the world, but it just didn’t sit right with me and kind of made me sick to my stomach.
On the art side of things, Eaton delivers a solid book and really manages to get across the gruesomeness of this new world. There is nothing amazing distinctive about his art style, but it fits well with Seeley’s writing and really captured every detail. Overall, this is not my favourite work of Seeley’s, and despite my problems with it, this issue is a solid tie-in for the main story, and it will be interesting to see how all of this is concluded next week.
Images courtesy of DC Entertainment