Young Justice #5 // Review
The team battles Dark Opal, and Tim Drake recounts how he and Stephanie Brown have spent their time following the conclusion of James Tynion IV’s run on Detective Comics, in Young Justice #5, written by Brian Michael Bendis, with colors by Gabe Eltaeb, and art by John Timms, Kris Anka, and Evan “Doc” Shaner.
While Dark Opal whips out kryptonite to counter Superboy, Robin recalls how he came to regain memories of the original Young Justice, through the assistance of master magician, Zatanna. During their most recent appearances in Detective Comics, Robin and Spoiler (Stephanie Brown) encountered a dark future iteration of Tim, from the Titans Tomorrow timeline, who revealed their forgotten past, seemingly erased during the events of Flashpoint. Curious to learn more about their past selves, Tim and Stephanie seek aid from Zatanna. She’s able to restore all of Tim’s old memories, but is unable to determine why and how his mind had originally been tampered with.
Serving as a love letter to the long romance of Tim Drake and Stephanie Brown, the issue’s greatest achievement is it’s jubilous celebration of their union, and how wonderfully Bendis writes the couple. In addition, the issue is successful in bridging the gap in Tim’s timeline, and in establishing the mystery that will propel the series forward.
While the majority of the issue is dialogue-heavy, focusing on Tim and Stephanie’s past plot, there are also a number of creatively designed action panels of note. Nonetheless, by far, the artistic highlight of the issue is the phenomenal splash page showcasing Tim’s memories returning to him. An unabashed exaltation of the original Young Justice series, it validates and re-canonizes the characters and stories fans have long loved and missed, and it is wondrous to behold.
Young Justice #5 is a celebration of Young Justice past, present, and future. In authenticating the original series and orchestrating a mystery for the series to pursue, the issue proudly declares (in the words of Impulse) that “Young Justice is back!”