Monday, January 11, 2010

Read: Rann-Thanagar Holy War #7

Issue: Rann-Thanagar Holy War #7
Title: "On The Eve Of..."
Published Date: Jan 2009
Generation: Modern Carter
Retcon Status: In Continuity

Summary: On Rann, Adam Strange breaks the group up into teams.  He and Comet will ferry Starfire and The Weird out into space, outside of the forcefield, where they can Zeta Beam to Lady Styx and inform her about Synnar's ascendance.  Then he and Comet will attempt to Zeta Beam to Earth for reinforcements.  Meanwhile, Hawkman and the rest will find the generator Synnar is using on Rann.  The plan falls apart quickly, though, once Comet teleports everyone into space.  Synnar has placed a second force field in space, preventing the heroes from Zeta Beaming to Earth, and Starfire and Weird are immediately taken prisoner by Styx.  

Adam and Comet decide to investigate Synnar's satelite, since they can Zeta Beam there, and discover that it is a giant battery, draining nearly half a billion people of their life force to give Synnar the power of godhood.  And this is only one of several thousand such satelites, meaning Synnar has trillions such poor souls in his thrall.  On Lady Styx's flagship, Weird is able to slip through the guards and use his intangible hand to gran Styx's heart, forcing their release.  The quartet meets up and heads back to the surface.

On Rann, Synnar tells Deacon Dark that while the first step of his resurrection is complete, more is yet to come.  Meanwhile, Hawkman has found the generator, and is prepping the team to take it out.  He and Adam exchange information about their respective visions with Synnar, and Adam worries that whatever action he is taking here (including the mysterious "Plan X" he told Sardath to prepare for) will cause the ruin of Rann.  With the team ready, Adam and Hawkman launch the assault which will either end the Holy War or destroy his adopted home.

Review: The title of this story is very accurate, because we are in fact on the eve of armageddon in this issue.  Starlin clearly is only interested in certain characters at this point (namely, the Abberant Six, Synnar, and his cronies), so the other characters (such as Animal Man and Starfire) come across as less than important -- even when they are front and center!  But that is a result of the largish cast moreso than anything else, and since I like the characters which Starlin is focusing on, I don't mind so much.

Lim's art is fantastic, as it has been this entire series.  Sometimes you just get a really good match of artist and story, and this is one of those cases.  His Hawkman continues to look powerful and imposing, with a large, off-putting helmet which seperates him from his fellow heroes.  Everything just looks gorgeous, and his generous use of double page layouts, where there will be a two page splash to show the scale of something such as Styx's armada, overlayed with smaller panels, is really nice.

This series is pretty much rocketing towards its finale at this point, and there's no crazy revelations or anything like we had in the previous one.  It's still a good read, and fun sort of throwback cosmic comics.  I wish it had more Hawkman in it, but that's the way things go sometimes.

Image: Rann-Thanagar Holy War #7, 2009, Jim Starlin.

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