Forever Evil by Geoff Johns

details
Title: Forever Evil.
Volume: 4.5
Universe: The New 52.
Writer(s): Geoff Johns.
Penciller(s): David Finch.
Inker(s): Richard Friend.
Colourist(s): Sonia Oback.
Letterer(s): Rob Leigh & Carlos M. Mangual.
Publisher: DC Comics.
Format: Paperback.
Release Date: May 19th, 2015.
Pages: 240.
Genre(s): Comics, Science-Fiction.
ISBN13: 9781401253387.
My Overall Rating: ★★★★☆.

Previously on the DC Universe New 52’s Justice League series:
Justice League (Vol. 1): Origin by Geoff Johns
Justice League (Vol. 2): The Villain’s Journey by Geoff Johns
Justice League (Vol. 3): Throne of Atlantis by Geoff Johns
Justice League (Vol. 3.5): Trinity by Geoff Johns
Justice League (Vol. 4): The Grid by Geoff Johns

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While crossover events in the comic industry are dreaded by many as the result isn’t always worth the hype or the wait, there are times where these special moments serve as an important event, allowing the writers to push the story in the direction they wish to go. In fact, these events are often characterized by a much bigger level of threat that requires a collaborative effort to overcome the trial afoot and it is in these stories that fans can rejoice in seeing their heroes join forces and work as a unit. But what happens when there are no more heroes to stand up against these threats? Leave it to writer Geoff Johns and artist David Finch to pass on the torch of heroism to villains as the fate of the universe is now in their hands. With all three Justice Leagues now gone, someone has to step up and lead the charge, but will it be enough? This is where some people show their true—or is it?—colours when you least expect it.

What is Forever Evil about? Taking place directly after the events in Trinity and The Grid, the story introduces the Crime Syndicate, an evil version of the Justice League from Earth-3 looking to rule Earth-0 now that they’ve somehow taken care of the Justice League once and for all. To assert their dominance, they recruit every villain around the world and prepare themselves for an unknown evil force that has threatened them in their past lives. Unfortunately for them, Lex Luthor does not plan to bend the knee to anyone just yet and prepares a coup to rid the world of these facsimiles. To do so, he recruits a group of villains and teams up with an unexpected ally: Batman. Collecting Forever Evil #1-7, this universe-wide crossover event is a race against time as alliances are made to save the Justice League and take down the Crime Syndicate.

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While Trinity and The Grid were messy story arcs, they’ve served as excellent fillers to introduce the Crime Syndicate in Forever Evil. As rare as they are, this is a mini-series that finally tells a story with a beginning and an end, and the stakes are as high as ever with the Justice League put aside for unlikely heroes to take the stage and shine under the spotlight. While doppelganger villains is a bit too easy as an idea, it fits perfectly into the multiverse puzzle and allows fans to embrace an epic confrontation within a grim world where villains reign and their motives are laid out on the table for us to further understand what comes first for many of them. Whether it’s their selves, family or power, this story arc does a tremendous job in showcasing each of their strengths and weaknesses as they are pitted against foes who do not blink at the idea of taking the lives of others.

Filled with fantastic revelations, especially one that will have great impacts on Batman in future stories, Geoff Johns brilliantly brings forth the epic scale sequences that are expected with a Justice League series in this universe-wide event. As per usual, the artwork elevates the game to new levels as artist David Finch draws incredible characters in splendid settings filled with madness and chaos, while inker Richard Friend and colourist Sonia Oback set the dark and heavy tones with every stroke of their pens. It is worth mentioning that the emotions were incredibly intense in this one as fear and anger were beautifully drawn into characters, especially with Lex Luthor who somehow successfully unveils one of his rare facades as he faces off with an evil far greater than him. His growth in this story is one that is simply unprecedented.

Forever Evil is an action-packed and marvelous introduction to the Crime Syndicate as villains face each other in a clash for domination and survival.


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