Dark Ages #5 Review

Written by: Tom Taylor

Art by: Iban Coello

Coloring by: Brian Reber

Lettering by: VC’s Joe Sabino

I have to say one thing before anything else. Miles Morales in Dark Ages #5 has the same hairstyle as me, so he’s officially the best-looking dude around. Jokes aside, as much as I love Tom Taylor’s ability to bring together characters who don’t get to hang out a lot and make them make sweet music to my eyes… it’s not as well done here.

In Injustice and previous Dark Ages issues, the creative team focused on a few heroes at a time. That, or they let one or two characters take the lead before others. This allowed for some well-crafted character moments and dynamics. There are just too many characters all together at once here. Nobody stands out in this issue outside of flashy attacks. With the status quo continuing as it is, that’s probably not going to change.

Don’t worry, he still talks just fine.

It also doesn’t help that after six issues, the villains feel–well–boring. Apocalypse just wants ultimate power but doesn’t have any of the grandstanding gravitas that he should. Apocalypse before Dawn of X was a pretty one-note villain beneath the surface, but the surface was so goddamn entertaining with his speeches on evolution and his cartoonish supremacy. Now he’s still giving little more than exposition for a really obvious yet for some reason mysterious plan. It’s boring for a usually fun villain.

Dark Ages #5 isn’t bad at all, it’s just on the low end of the series so far and some of the creative team’s work in the past year. It has occurred to me that outside of Taylor’s X-Men-centric centric books, his Marvel books haven’t hit with me. Maybe I just don’t like his writing style with the wider Marvel Universe like I do his DC books, but I don’t think that’s it. The Marvel Universe here feels like a collection of action figures. There are no more main characters in the plot right now, and this problem was evident the last issue to a lesser extent. Here’s hoping the series gets more focused from here on out.

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