Justice League Dark #3 // Review
A sense of Wonder is reinvigorated in the character of Diana Prince, as James Tynion IV rewrites the laws and history of magic within the DC Universe in Justice League Dark #3, illustrated by penciler Alvaro Martinez Bueno, inker Raul Fernandez, and colorist Brad Anderson.
Summoned by a disgruntled Nabu, the nefarious Upside-Down Man is properly introduced to Justice League Dark and proceeds to prove himself a legitimate threat, decimating their ranks with relative ease. Absolute obliteration of the team is only circumvented through the interjection of Wonder Woman, who is able to unleash mysterious magical powers she didn't know she possessed.
The majority of the issue is comprised of the chilling inaugural interaction and subsequent fight between the Upside-Down Man and Justice League Dark, brought terrifyingly to life through James Tynion IV’s dark dialogue. However, one of the issue's highlights is the opening flashback, which showcases Zatanna’s upbringing and magical tutelage under her father, Zatara. In these pages, James Tynion IV succeeds in explaining some of the basic tenants of the magical system he’s establishing, while simultaneously cultivating meaningful character work.
The artistic team of Bueno, Fernandez, and Anderson excel in their collaboration this issue, constructing a vast array of ghoulish, terrifying visions among wondrous fight scenes. Some of the artistic high points can be seen in the effects of the Upside-Down Man’s attacks upon individual members of Justice League Dark, and in a splash page featuring a beautifully rendered, towering, monstrous Swamp Thing.
Justice League Dark #3 establishes The Upside-Down Man and the Otherkind as formidable, menacing threats to DC’s magical community, while opening the door to another facet of the Tynion IV’s budding magical realm. An immersive, harrowing tale which orchestrates the framework for the next series arc, The Witching Hour, this issue is not to be missed.