The Flash runs through a shattered multiverse on the cover of Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths.

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths #4 Review

Written by: Joshua Williamson

Art by: Daniel Sampere

Coloring by: Alejandro Sanchez

Lettering by: Tom Napolitano

Editing by: Chris Rosa, Paul Kaminski

Deathstroke leads his society of villains and D-list supervillains against the Legion of Doom.
Somebody put this old man out of his misery.

This is the first issue of this event with the name change. Changing it to Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths is a cash-in, but hardly the worst one. If I tried to argue that it doesn’t fit the story, I’d be lying. The multiverse has become infinite again, beyond 52 universes, and we inch closer towards finding out why. Each issue so far has been great in and of itself, anchored by a pivotal moment or theme that makes it fun to read. Altogether though, it doesn’t feel right.

Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths reaches its halfway point with #4, and the plot still feels like it’s just starting. It’s all build-up, then more build-up, then more build-up, rather than real progress. We keep starting again at the same point of rising action, inching slowly towards the climax, but never see the peak. By the time this event is over, there will likely be a few criticisms about the pacing.

But like I said, the build-up is enjoyable. Having the Justice Society of America come back to help the Titans and the new Justice League is nothing less than elating. Even through the short textless bubbles of heroes around the world, we’re knee-deep in seeing heroes do what heroes are supposed to do. Save people. We tend to get a decent bit of that in these event comics, but this issue is one of the best examples of how to do it well.

The newer and older Swamp Thing talk about their encounter with the Great Darkness long ago, before Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths.
This cool bit of lore and references is about the coolest thing in the book for one Swamp Thing fan.

The stuff with the villains feels like what should be the last bit of build-up before everything starts happening. While heroes vs heroes get old, villains vs villains do not. Seeing villains try to reason with each other is entirely different from the alternative. With heroes, you’re always just screaming at them to listen. With villains, they are listening, but ultimately listening doesn’t matter when you’re all a bunch of untrustworthy liars. Luthor can pretend to offer Deathstroke help just until he tries to shoot him in the back.

So each issue so far is good, but with how it’s going, I don’t expect a strong climax. You can only build and build for so long before you’ve wasted too much time. Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths makes thematic sense, but if it’s going to live up to its new name, it’s going to have to bring the heat.

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