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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

DC Rebirth: A (Somewhat) Outsider's Perspective - Week Seven

Welcome everyone to week seven of DC Rebirth!  This is a series of articles where, as someone who came to most of DC Comics with the New 52, I take a look to see how Rebirth is shaping up for new readers.  While plenty of books are already well into their new runs, I only take a look at the Rebirth (essentially #0) and #1 issues of each of these books so new readers can find a starting point that may align with their interests.

This week was pretty light, seeing two Rebirth specials and one debut issue.  Here's how they shaped up.

Batgirl and the Birds of Prey Rebirth #1

Written by Julie Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Claire Roe

Premise: Batgirl and Black Canary team up to track down who has stolen Barbara Gordon's old alias Oracle, which leads them into a face off with Huntress.

New Reader Friendliness: Like most of these Rebirth issues, this story does a lot of explaining of their characters' pasts, some more recent than others.  If you've always been intrigued to read Batgirl or Black Canary, this comic is the perfect place to start.  Barbara Gordon's past is covered pretty well, highlighting episodes such as The Killing Joke (just in time for the animated movie).  Black Canary's more recent escapades are all that is covered - same goes for Huntress - but this is overall a pretty easy story for new readers to follow.  This all female creative team brings one of the better Rebirth issues that sets up an intriguing story to come.

Verdict: In for the next issue

The Hellblazer Rebirth #1

Written by Simon Oliver
Art by Moritat

Premise: John Constantine returns to London to do battle with a demon.

New Reader Friendliness: So, I'm not very knowledgeable when it comes to Constantine.  I have the first trade of the original Hellblazer, but overall I have read very few comics with the character.  If this Rebirth issue is any indication, there doesn't seem to be that much to know about him to read a comic about him.  Constantine fights demons and he does so with a cocky attitude.  That's about it.  While this issue is probably okay for new readers, it is not the most exciting story.  The art by Moritat is quite good and, while the cameos of Swamp Thing and certain Justice League characters is fun, it all adds up to an experience that is overall very middle of the road.  If you're interested in trying the supernatural side of the DCU, this is pretty good for new readers, but I'm not sure this series will be long for this Earth.

Verdict: Stopping here

Justice League #1

Written by Bryan Hitch
Art by Tony S. Daniel

Premise: As earthquakes begin to occur all around the planet, the Justice League must split up to solve the problem.

New Reader Friendliness: After a pretty rough Rebirth issue, Justice League feels like it's on much better footing here with fantastic art and a much more interesting story.  If you're new to the DC Universe and are wanting to try out their equivalent of the Avengers, this is a great place to start.  You may not get a ton of information on each of the characters, but Bryan Hitch crafts a narrative that allows you to see what each of these characters can do.  The threat here is one that certainly justifies the entire team working together, which is something that is sometimes forgotten in a team-up book.  One of the more riveting debut issues of Rebirth so far, you owe it to yourself to check this out.

Verdict: Already on my pull list and staying there

Well that's it for this week!  If you want to take a look at any of the previous weeks to see how DC Rebirth has been, you can do so by clicking any of the links below.

JUNE: Week OneWeek TwoWeek ThreeWeek Four

JULY: Week FiveWeek Six

And for the TL;DR types, here's a quick recap of this week

Week Seven

Most New Reader Friendly: Batgirl and the Birds of Prey Rebirth #1
Best Overall: Justice League #1

See you back here next week as the final week of July gets a bit more loaded with Batgirl, Green Lantern Corps, Red Hood and the Outlaws, Nightwing, and Titans all making some sort of debut!

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