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stl024557The graduating class of the DC’s New Talent Development Workshops have finally had
their short stories released in the
New Talent Showcase #1. The stories are either 8-page tie-ins to already existing series or additional intriguing mythology within the DC Universe. The writers and artist of the issue have created dynamic stories with DC properties like Superman, Hawkgirl, Deadman, Hellblazer, and more. There’s a little bit of something for any DC fan looking to read short stories from fresh voices of the industry.

“Hellblazer: The Road To Hell” by Adam Smith and Siya Oum is a story that features the british occult detective John Constantine hungover in a bar in hell. He’s searching for Zatanna’s father in hell to try and bring him back to life, but in his search he finds a
secret he now needs to live with. It’s a poetic little story that features both a literal and metaphorical hell. Oum’s use of character expressions is done well in the fallout between Constantine and Zatanna as well as the ultimate realization of Zatanna’s fate. Smith’s title “The Road To Hell” is a clear reference to the idea of good intentions building the path to hell and how Constantine is trapped in his own hell with the knowledge of Zatanna’s inevitable damnation.

“Superman: The Man In Black” written by Michael McMillian and art by Juan Ferreyra is a short story featuring Superman fighting a giant Joker themed android. McMillian captures Superman’s internal dialogue well in a retelling of a nightmare he’s been having lately. One that ties to the opening teaser of the story featuring another alien that crashed in Smallville. Ferreyra’s art in the opening is slow, but builds into a mystery that ties into the Joker in a way that deserves to be explored. The mythos of Smallville tying to the Joker and Superman could potentially prove to be the most enticing mythology plot point of the showcase.

“Hawkgirl: Weapons of War” by Erica Schultz and Sonny Liew starts off with scene in Chicago destroyed by the very citizens who live there. What follows is a noir-like unraveling of how Chicago could be brought to such destruction. Shayera AKA Hawkgirl investigates a murder that leads her to finding weapons that are not of Earthly origins. She hides these weapons, but as the story unfolds it quickly turns into a stomach churning story of the fragility of humanity in the face of intergalactic weapons. Liew’s art provides a grit to a fantastical story that any fan of Hawkgirl or someone wanting to start reading this character would enjoy.

The New Talent Showcase is a promising platform for the future of the publisher. The stories all serve a greater purpose whether it’s to give backstory on Kyle Rayner before Tom King’s Omega Men or an Arkham Asylum escape led by Harley Quinn. The writing is clear and concise while the art offers what the medium can do best in very few pages. A reader need not spend too much time and the stories will have them searching for more on the characters used in the showcase. The writers and artists featured in the showcase have proved their worth and future stories from them in the DC Universe would be more than welcome.

Verdict:

Check it out! It’s a showcase, so every story is short enough that a reader doesn’t have to spend a lot of time to get a good story featuring DC’s characters. They all share some action and insight into each character while still engaging a reader in their larger mythos. It features the Joker, Superman, Wonder Woman, Catwoman, John Constantine, Deadman, Hawkgirl, Kyle Rayner’s White Lantern, The Flash, and some more all bundled in this awesome little book. The Superman, White Lantern, Hellblazer, Hawkgirl, and Wonder Woman stories alone are worth reading.

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