Crime Syndicate #4
DC Comics 2021
Written by Andy Schmidt
Pencilled by Kiernan McKeown
Inked by Dexter Vines
Coloured by Steve Oliff
Lettered by Rob Leigh
The world has been saved by the…Crime Syndicate?! With the Starro invaders vanquished, what’s next for Earth-3’s most notorious saviours? Can loose cannons Emerald Knight, Quick, and Atomica keep their cool? Will Ultraman accept Superwoman and Owlman’s tantalizing offer? And what is Alexander Luthor plotting as all these metahuman menaces run amok?
Here’s the REAL question of the month: Which heroes will join the LEGION OF JUSTICE?
In this issue’s backup story, witness the origin of the Emerald Knight, illustrated by superstar artist Bryan Hitch!
In the aftermath of the Starro event it’s time to see how the Crime Syndicate is formed and how our villains decide to come together to create the team that will take over the world. Of course with Alexander Luthor putting out a call to arms to those who would fight them makes the formation of such a team more urgent than ever before. With a stream of never ending Crisis events DC finds itself in something of a resurgence with new titles that help redefine the multiverse and this is primary among them. It has all that we want to see from the current Earth 3 and then some, it’s just too bad it’s only a limited series.
I am very much enjoying the way that this is being told. The story & plot development that we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is presented exceptionally. The character development that we see through the dialogue, character interaction and how they act and react to the situations and circumstances that they encounter so that it fleshes them out more fully is really nice to see. The pacing is superb and as it takes us through the pages revealing more and more of the story alongside the twists & turns along the way we are excited by what we see.
I am enjoying how we see this being structured and how the layers continue to emerge, evolve and strengthen. These layers are where we see some interesting bits take place like the emergence of Sinestro, the Emerald Knight’s ring being sentient and a bad influence, the way Donna got Ultraman on board all of these side bits really give the story some extra depth and complexity. How we see everything working together to create the story’s ebb & flow as well as how it moves the story forward is greatly achieved.
The interiors here are really rather marvellous to see. The linework that we see is stupendous and with the varying weights and techniques that we see to bring out the level of detail work is so extremely brilliant. I love that you’d never know that there are two separate folks doing the work, see penciller and inker, because it looks seamlessly like one person did all the work. The backgrounds that we see are phenomenal and how they work within the composition of the panels bringing us depth perception, a sense of scale and the overall sense of size and scope to the story is incredibly well done. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show an extremely talented eye for storytelling. The colour work is beautifully rendered. The various hues and tones within the colours being utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work is fabulous to see.
The spotlight on the Emerald Knight shows us that he and Power Ring are nothing alike and that though he has the ring he’s really not what we’d call a villain. Anti-Hero sure but villain no and it makes all the difference in the world in how we see him.
I think this should be an ongoing series as well as the potential here is unlimited and while certain aspects will parallel with Earth 1 there are plenty of ways it can establish itself as its own identity and it’s this that I really want to see.