Good day everyone! This week we are starting things off with a tale from Batman. Now I have to tell you before we begin this, I am not a huge fan of DC and especially Batman. I will read them from time to time, but I find that every time I really latch onto one of their books and find it interesting enough to follow, they have a tendency to cancel it. So unfortunately, when it comes to books that have references to a lot of DC easter eggs I am at times lacking in my knowledge. So please keep this in mind as I try and stay as unbiased as possible in this blog, however I also have to warn there will be spoilers because to me this comic raised more questions than answers. As always, this is brought to you by Bearded Browncoat Comics and Games in Ocala Florida. So if you’re in town and want to play a game like Dicemaster, Warhammer or X-Wing then stop on by, build up your army and get to playing with some great people! As always, their facebook is linked to the top banner and their website to the bottom so feel free to visit them as well.
OK so now to get to the real meat of the subject the comic known as Dark Days: The Forge! This comic comes with a nice semi foil cover and a whole ton of questions. So we start this comic with journal pages from Hawkman AKA Carter Hall talking about the Nth Metal that was in a ship that came from the heavens. There are a few more journal entries interspersed in this comic, but this gives you the first hint of why this comic is called the forge…it seems to be about metal…but is it the Nth metal or something else?
Switch to the Bermuda Triangle where Wayne Enterprises has a black ops site drilling into the Earth’s core. A volcano getting ready to destroy the site and the main researcher who says there is something in the metal of earth’s core something wrong. Batman saves the researcher and the data and heads off. Though first,Aquaman gets in Batman’s face because Batman hid this facility even from him and Batman retorted about something hidden under Atlantis? Yup just two more questions to answer.
Now to Mogo where Gathnet dispatches Hal Jordan on a super secret mission that he is to tell noone about especially his human Green Lantern counterparts. Hal gets to his assignment which just happens to be the bat cave which is being guarded by a kid in yellow named Duke Thomas who seems very surprised that Green Lanterns ring is working on him. So here’s my question= this kid has no code name yet and is being trusted to safeguard the batcave against all, even family, yet he isn’t even up to speed that the Lantern rings don’t have the yellow weakness anymore? If he doesn’t keep up he’s gonna flunk out of Batschool. He also didn’t stop GL from finding a hidden cave in the batcave! Yay more mysteries! And yet no answers!
Onto a page with Immortal Man and what looks like Vandal Savage. They are simply talking about Duke Thomas’ mother, not much here except why do they care about her and why does she seem to be insane? Then another few pages of Hawkman Journal including one that is supposed to be from a nightmare between reincarnations which shows the same creepy batman statue as the cover of the comic does, looks almost like a what if batman ran Apokolips type of thing.
Jump to Batman beaming onto the Lunar Batcave…..wait since when does Batman have a cave on the moon? Did he build this during the time the JLA was on the moon? Is this still New 52 continuity or did we switch back to old continuity due to rebirth? See this is one of the reasons I hate batman….he has everything and no one bats an eye (no pun intended). Batman has a car, a jet, a helicopter, a boat, secret Wayne Tech site 14 in the Bermuda Triangle and now a lunar bat cave….sure why not I mean he is batman. *rolls eyes* Anyway back to the comic. Batman arrives on the moon to put the data from the volcano destroyed site into his computers, before he can get too far though Mr Terrific appears to give him even more information but from another earth. Earth 2? The Earth with the Watchmen? Some other Earth? How does Rebirth affect this? Batman says he already got the cells he needed from someone and that though they said he was too dangerous it was time to let him out as he would be needed for what was coming. He then opens a room with an egg in it that has the distinctive coloration of Plastic Man. Why the heck is he in there? Why is he an Egg? Did he appear in New 52? Has he been there since before the New 52? Why was he put there and how can he be so dangerous? So many questions and still not a single answer to be found!
Back to the Batcaves secret cave where Duke Thomas is now just walking along with Hal Jordan having basically given up on forcing him out. When Hal asks what this place is a spooky voice says it can tell him. Hal tries to find out how many people are here and his ring starts to fritz out. The voice starts telling a story about the Court of Owls and a Metal Tooth that would bring them back to life made from a metal called Electrum. As the voice speaks you see what could be Batman’s trophies from the court of owls or might just be holographs. Further down you see Doctor Fate’s Helmet, what appears to be Aquaman’s Trident and Wonder Woman’s Bracers. The voice claims that this metal shard similar properties to all the other powerful artifacts so I would assume the helmet and other things are those mentioned things. The voice also speaks of the formation of the outsiders and claims that Batman created them to find out more about the Metal. Next they speak of a green liquid metal called Dionesium and show some of it in a container. Could this be what the GL’s make their rings out of? Could this container be why Hal’s ring is acting up? The voice keeps going luring them further into the cave where Hal’s ring starts to actually send a burning sensation up his arm. More mystery without any sign of resolutions in this comic.
Oh, now we jump back to Hawkman who has some pieces of stone that show symbols for the first tribes of humans. Before now, the thought was there were three and it looks to be Bird, Bear, and Wolf. Then he puts down a 4th piece with a Bat symbol upon it and asks if the original tribes were 4 and not 3. Queue Batman arriving at the Fortress of Solitude where he has a secret room that Superman has never looked into. Inside said secret room is a HUGE crystal vault with a giant lock and supposedly no one can open said lock. When someone needs a miracle like that done however one just needs call Mr. Miracle! With relative ease the lock is sprung and Scott Free leaves telling Batman he is crazy to have kept that thing much less thinking of using it. Batman of course brushes him off and loads the data all into this tower looking thing that looks like it is made of some sort of grotesque mother box Apokolips tech.
Before we end we head back to Batman’s secret cave in cave where Hal Jordan and Duke Thomas finally get to the end of the cave to find (cue drumroll) The JOKER scribbling numbers on a wall. There are so many versions of the Joker out there it is hard to know what to expect and just has hard to try and pinpoint which incarnation this is meant to be- but to me, this one looks like the one from the Injustice 2 video game.
So, to sum up I am of two minds for this comic. In one way, I am looking at it and thinking this is leaving waaaaaaaaay too many questions for me to really enjoy. At the same time however, I look at the comic and the mysteries and say “damn I want the answers now”. In some ways I want to drop the book and never pick it up again or look for number 2, and in many ways I can hardly wait for the next one so I can continue the story, just to see what these mysteries all hold. It seems I have until August to decide. Have you read this comic? If so, what’s your take on it? Too many questions or are you just thirsting for more info on why all these metals seem to be joined in some way? Be sure to let us know in the comments!