REVIEW: DOOMSDAY CLOCK #2 Author: Ryan Lower (Follow @LOWER_RYAN)
Date: December 27, 2017
SYNOPSIS: DC and Watchmen characters collide at last! The story that began in DC UNIVERSE: REBIRTH #1 comes to a thrilling and unexpected crescendo in the pages of this titanic twelve-issue series by the all-star team that brought you BATMAN: EARTH ONE and SHAZAM!
In this second chapter: The Dark Knight discovers another relic from the Watchmen world. Lex Luthor pays a devil’s bargain. And killer clowns trek through Gotham seeking a madman.
The Watchmen have entered the DC Universe in this week’s Doomsday Clock #2.
We spend the issue following characters new (Marionette, Mime) and old (Rorschach, Ozymandias) as they prepare to track down Dr. Manhattan. Their world is on the verge of a nuclear attack and need the superhuman to save the planet.
Except it may be too late.
Regardless, they find a way into Gotham and Metropolis, to come face-to-face with the world’s 2 smartest men. Rorschach takes one, Ozymandias takes the other (not surprising who chooses whom). The ending brought a smile to my face for different reasons. First, seeing these characters come together (something I thought I’d never experience) and second, there’s a surprise.
I loved Doomsday Clock #2 more than last month’s debut issue…and I really liked that one! That issue served as a reunion to this Watchmen world, and laid the groundwork. Here, Geoff Johns and Gary Frank add depth to the story and begin pushing us toward a direction. Along the way, we peel back a few layers of these characters, making us more empathetic and clear on their personalities. We don’t get a biography on Marionette and the Mime, but we see why they’re critical to bringing back Dr. Manhattan. Adrian Veidt’s cancer is getting more complicated. It’s a subtle touch, but reminds us he’s suffering. Rorschach acts like the original character even more, but not in a distracting way. He sure loves to make himself at home.
Then there’s Batman.
Johns and Frank have worked together on the two Earth One books, and I’ve loved them. I was excited at the prospect that these two would be revisiting the world of The Dark Knight again, and they don’t disappoint. They have fleshed out an intriguing story that combines Bruce Wayne, Batman, Lex Luthor, AND the Watchmen yet it never feels forced, stuffed or too complex. It simply makes sense. There’s an underlying element of a “metahuman gene” that’s really caught my eye, and is being fleshed out in the extras of these first two issues. The introduction of The Dark Knight makes this book excellent.
Doomsday Clock #2 is a work of genius. It’s exciting, comical and gives us time to breathe while moving at a brisk pace. Geoff Johns is world building by combining worlds. Why would Ozymandias, Rorschach and Dr. Manhattan need to invade the DC Universe? Johns has the answer, and it’s working. Plus, he has an ace up his sleeve in Gary Frank, whose art has never looked better.
We’re only 2 issues in and have barely scratched the surface of this story. However, I can’t praise Johns and Frank enough for taking an unenviable position (continuing the Watchmen story) and making it work.
If you haven’t started this series yet, there’s still time. But the clock is ticking. - Ryan Lower
A lifelong Batman fan, Ryan Lower grew up in the midwest reading, watching, dreaming of The Dark Knight.
His favorite Batman stories are THE LONG HALLOWEEN, THE DARK KNIGHT and anything from BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES.
He currently resides in his own Batcave in Chicago.
Follow him on Twitter @LOWER_RYAN.