By Kyle Higgins, Christos Gage, Thony Silas & Iban Coello
Batman Beyond Universe #5 begins new story arcs for the two series. A villain from the original Bat family’s past unveils himself and is holding Gotham City ransom in Batman Beyond. Justice League Beyond continues with Zod adjusting to his new life and the league. When technology goes awry across the world, the team must enlist every possible metahuman to fight the coming menace, who happens to be the mastermind of the previous plot.
Batman Beyond stories that connect the past Batman team with the present always make for enthralling tales. The new (or old, depending on how you look at it) foe was foreshadowed in the first issue of Kyle Higgins’ run. Higgins is even able to tie a beyond villain with one of the original rogues gallery and have it make perfect sense; definitely one of the best surprises in the issue. In his first arc, Kyle added a new foe and now he’s incorporating a classic one in this storyline. His concept and grasp of story structure is inspiring. At the end, the current Bat family makes a shocking decision, which immediately hooks the reader for next month.
Justice League Beyond was a bit lacking this time. Granted, this was the exposition for the story, but there were no real surprises or powerful moments. Sure, the League is shown fighting, but that gets old very quickly. The scene that really stands out is when Clark is consulting Bruce Wayne. It was only a page, but it well written. The plot basically went by the numbers and when the reveal happened at the end of the issue, it wasn’t shocking at all. The reader was able to see the twist coming at the end of the previous issue. Hopefully the plot picks up in issue six.
The new foe’s design in Batman Beyond is excellent. Thony Silas was able to put his spin on an old favorite. Other than that, there wasn’t much that stood out; he continues solid work on this run. The same goes for Iban Coello. Despite the fact that there was a lot of conflict/action in Justice League Beyond, none of the panels really jumped of f the page.
Batman Beyond continues to be a fantastic read! Just for that comic alone, Universe is worth buying. Let’s hope Justice League Beyond gets back to par soon!