By Francis Manapul and Steve Wands
Francis Manapul’s latest issue, Trinity #10 is the second part in the current arc of a series that largely focuses on the adventures of Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. Even though the rest of the Justice League play into this arc, more problems for the Trinity are created because of the inclusion of their teammates. This issue picks up from the last where the Justice League have been infected by some kind of virus that’s turning them against their friends, and the Trinity are forced into action to stop it before it spreads. They may soon be forced to make a horrible choice that could have dramatic consequences, because the stakes are most certainly high. This issue does a good job at establishing what the Justice League has to lose and really reinforces those stakes. Right from the get-go, the book starts at a lightning fast pace and doesn’t slow down, which feels incredibly appropriate for an issue guest starring The Flash.
Although several Justice Leaguers star in this issue, the main focus is always kept on Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman, hence the title of the series. Manapul gives the three plenty to do, balancing time effectively between the Trinity as the book progresses. The dialogue, while mostly good, is a little clichéd here and there, with a nod to Indiana Jones’ famous line, “snakes… why did it have to be snakes?” echoed from Batman. Only in this case, it’s tentacles instead of snakes.
Back on artistic duties, the main draw of Trinity #10 here is Manapul’s amazing artwork, where he alone provides all line work and colors; in addition to writing the script itself. Every single character here looks nothing short of incredible, and the atmosphere created on the Watchtower in space is most certainly felt. The alien design feels properly alien and intriguing, presenting an interesting new threat to the Justice League that is really fleshed out here. Manapul’s colors are also worth mentioning as he brings an energy to the book that feels vibrant, bursting full of energy and always interesting. The subtle changing of hues to match the increasing tension is also a fantastic stylistic choice by Manapul that really helps leave an impression. The palette works to reinforce that drama because you know that things are only going to get worse as the issue progresses and when they do, it’s a very awesome final reveal.
The biggest problem with Trinity #10 is that it doesn’t feel exactly relevant in the terms of the arc’s greater context. Aside from some revelations about the alien threat the Justice League are up against, it’s largely skippable, being predominately made up of several fight scenes that manage to tell an action-heavy narrative. This is a problem that can’t help but set Trinity #10 back as a result; nothing feels developed enough to be essential. It may not be a must-read issue story-wise, but if you’re here for just the art – you can’t afford to miss this book because Francis Manapul’s visuals are nothing short of mind-blowing.