Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Justice League Dark #7 Review

Tales From the Gripped

Writer: James Tynion IV 
Penciller: Alvarez Martínez Bueno 
Inker: Raul Fernandez 
Colorist: Brad Anderson 
Letterer: Rob Leigh 
Cover Price: $3.99 
On Sale Date: January 16, 2019

I think I was about four or five years old when I saw my first EC Comic. It was reprinted in black-and-white in a book—I think it must have been Comix: A History of Comic Books in America, but I’m not sure. I was captivated, and not too long after that Gemstone would reprint the old EC “new trend” books in color. I got as many as I could, I loved them then and I still love them now. So of course, I should have pretty fond feelings for this issue, which is patterned like one of these classic tales, curated by a creepy narrator, right? Find out in my review of Justice League Dark #7, commencing below!

Explain It!

As mentioned in the intro, this issue is patterned like an issue of The Crypt of Terror, or its sibling books Vault of Horror and Haunt of Fear, in that the comic contains three creepy stories of the Otherkind’s arrival in our world, narrated by Man-Bat who is compelled to write the tales down—even when he doesn’t remember having done so. These tales include other members of the DCU’s magic set, like I…Vampire and Frankenstein and the Agents of S.H.A.D.E. (yesss….), and revolve around these Otherkind being wholly underestimated by the magic-wielders they threaten to usurp. It seems like everyone is a pawn to the whims of the Upside-Down Man, everyone is a player in this tragedy.

And, for once, I am not going to spoil this issue. I want you to read it. The good news is that you can read this issue without dealing too deeply with what came before—I think everything you need to enjoy it is right there in the pages provided. If you like it as much as I did, then you should feel somewhat compelled to read the earlier issues, but it is not necessary. While this isn’t a one-off, it’s concise and explanatory, and it doesn’t reference previous events in a way that should leave you confused. I would love to know what you think of this issue. 

Since I’m not spoiling the issue, this review reads kind of short. Don’t mistake this to mean that there’s a dearth of content, or that I have nothing to say about the issue—there’s a lot I could go on at length about. But I don’t want to give anything away, I want the reader to go into this as freshly as possible. It doesn’t matter if you’re unfamiliar with the EC Comics that inspired this format, it only adds another layer of interest. The artwork alone is gorgeous, lush and dripping with shadows and creepiness that result in a near-perfect ambiance. This is the comic book I want to see in the world, and I’m glad some folks have had the wherewithal to realize it.

Bits and Pieces:

An EC Comics-style anthology of creepy stories involving the Otherkind, and the real surprise here is that they're genuinely creepy. Anyone curious about the book can check out this issue without reading any previous, and I recommend that you do. This book is right in the wheelhouse of fans who like horror and DC Universe magic stuff.



  1. I was crazily excited to see Frankenstein and The Creature Commandos. This book is doing everything right!

    1. I am ready for my Frankenstein and the Agents of S.H.A.D.E. miniseries now

    2. I agree, this book hits all of the right spots for a horror book! Does anyone else think that the Upside-Down Man wants Zatara to break the barrier?