Infinite Frontier by Joshua Williamson

details
Title: Infinite Frontier.
Writer(s): Joshua Williamson.
Artist(s): John Timms, David Marquez, Jorge Jiménez, Alitha Martinez, Joëlle Jones.
Inker(s): Joëlle Jones, Stephen Byrne, Jordi Tarragona, Jamal Igle, Alex Maleev, Todd Nauck, Howard Porter, Mark Morales, Dexter Soy, Klaus Janson, Xermanico, Jesus Merino, Norm Rapmund, Raul Fernandez, Tom Derenick.
Colourist(s): Hi-Fi, Alejandro Sanchez, Tomeu Morey, Jordie Bellaire, Alex Sinclair, Emilio Lopez, Tamra Bonvillain, Brad Anderson, Romulo Fajardo.
Letterer(s): Tom Napolitano.
Publisher: DC Comics.

Format: Digital.
Release Date: April 19th, 2022.
Pages: 352.
Genre(s): Comic Book, Superhero.
ASIN: B09RRQ296Q.
My Overall Rating:

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Previous in the DC Universe:
Dark Nights: Death Metal by Scott Snyder.

thoughts

It was time to play a little bit of catch-up, having temporarily lost interest in the state of the DC Universe after writer Scott Snyder’s departure from the DC Comics scene, especially once he significantly reconstructed and exponentially transformed the multiverse in unimaginable ways with his Dark Nights and Justice League comic book stories. Picking up after the events of Dark Nights: Death Metal, DC Comics puts forth a soft reboot in the form of a DC Universe event helmed by writer Joshua Williamson. Collectings issues #0-6 and Infinite Frontier: Secret Files #1, this phase of the DC Universe cautiously revisits the status quo and explores the state of the multiverse, now containing two opposite worlds: Elseworld and Earth Omega.

What is Infinite Frontier about? Following the recreation of the infinite Multiverse, Wonder Woman ascension after the battle with The Batman Who Laughs embarks on a short journey with The Spectre as she ponders on the new role she has been offered among the Quintessence. She thus witnesses the current state of the world, from the return from the dead of beloved heroes and the continued pursuit of justice and peace by others, and reflects on the role that wishes to play going forward. Meanwhile, on Earth Omega, Darkseid achieves his latest and purest form as his evil associates seek out the final pieces to achieve multiverse domination. However, another threat lurks in the shadow and sees in the fastest man alive something he could do for him.

“I am not the only one who seeks this power. But only I will control… The Great Darkness.”

— Joshua Williamson

There are no surprises going into this one-shot event story. It contains a lot of characters, many of which are barely explored, leaving much to the reader’s own knowledge of the DC Universe to find excitement and thrill at the sight of their existence and relevance within this latest superhero narrative. In the relatively-few pages, each issue showcased these new teams or took a moment to introduce key characters and their powers that will inevitably play a role in the grand scheme of multiverse things. As you progress through the story, moving back and forth between different narrative subplots until they inevitably collide once the mysterious antagonist is finally revealed, as well as his motives, the plot somehow continuously finds ways to lose its momentum. However, with the pieces that it had to work with and the inevitable necessity of having a multiverse crisis to keep these stories alive, writer Joshua Williamson does as well as he could to lay out the foundation needed for the future of DC Comics.

With the heaping number of artists involved in these issues, especially with #0, the sight of different artistic styles appearing and disappearing unpredictably was foreseen. More often than not, character designs and panel space management were prudent and good, never ambitious or creative in any particular way. Splash pages were also mostly always used to showcase teams jumping out of the page with their league’s name in a capitalized and stylized fashion. With the incredible amount of characters, it also made for a very colourful read, making each page an eye-stimulating experience. At times, it is worth mentioning that the clever use of recognizable artistic styles to represent characters from a specific era made for an enjoyable yet rare surprise. However, just like the mystery and tale at the heart of this multiverse event, the artwork does not go above and beyond to make anything stand out. Most likely the absence of an effort to make an original soft reboot meant that readers had to look elsewhere, like the numerous superhero runs that will work off the premise of this story, to find better stories and artwork.

Infinite Frontier is a decent yet cumbrous DC Universe story that introduces the active heroes and villains in the midst of a larger and mysterious multiverse threat.


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12 thoughts on “Infinite Frontier by Joshua Williamson

  1. This may be a question with an obvious answer, but I can be a little slow sometimes. 🙂 Is this a follow up to Infinite Crisis? Do I have that name correct? I seem to recall some other universe shattering storyline like that. Sadly, it’s these sorts of stories that make me feel perfectly content to no longer actively subscribe to comics. I used to love the monthly trip to the comic store to pick up whatever new goodies were in my box. But these days I much prefer waiting until specific select collections are published as trade paperbacks or hardcovers. Do you have any idea what percentage of comics you still read as individual issues, whether digital or paper, versus collections? All that said, I still want to go back and reread some of my older single issue comics, try to find the old gems hidden in the stacks.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You got the name right. Infinite Frontier is sort of a follow-up to all those crisis events, especially the last one in Dark Nights. With everything getting bigger and bigger, it was sort of inevitable for them to reference some of the past crises and the residual effects they’ve had on the multiverse. I can totally understand how these cosmic crossover events could be a turn-off for readers and I feel it more and more as I continue to read these stories. They’re really there just to have some sort of overarching story to tie things together but they’re rarely properly fleshed out and thought through. Over the past years, I’ve become less and less a single-issue or paperback reader and now use digital copies to get through a chunk of comic books. When I know I love it, I’ll get myself a copy for my collection. I’d say it’s almost 25% physical and 75% digital nowadays. The only individual issues that I still get are for the canon Batman and Detective Comics series. I’m not sure if I’ll ever stop collecting them but for now, it’s my expensive little side hobby to keep going! 😀 I do hope you’ll go digging into your collection again to enjoy those old gems you have.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hmmm, it doesn’t sound like a great experience. I wonder, how important the artwork is for your overall enjoyment? Have you had examples of favourites, where you loved the story, but not the art?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Nowadays, it’s hard to excuse a mediocre artwork style, and if it is at first glance, ugly, if the story’s good, it’ll somehow justify the ugliness of the art but not everyone knows how to achieve it. I can think of a couple of stories that are like that, where the story pretty much justifies the art and makes the whole masterful but they’re often older stories.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great review, Lashaan! While it must be really interesting to see a lot of different artistic styles – hopefully used in the best possible way – it seems like the incredible number of characters might be a bit confusing and definitely call for an “experiences” reader to really understand what it’s all about!

    Liked by 1 person

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