Reviews of Dark Knights of Steel #5
Black Knights of Steel was a surprise hit that offers incredible twists and a great fusion of concept with familiar characters. It’s a surprise simply because the concept on paper wouldn’t work for most creators: throw the whole universe of DC characters into the medieval era and see what it means when godlike characters come to Earth. Black Knights of Steel Issue 5 comes out this week, approaching the midpoint of the 12-issue maxi-series, but as we used to ask here at AIPT in every review… is that right?
The issue opens with the kingdom of El where Clark and his sister Zala mourn their father. Writer Tom Taylor and artist Yasmine Putri show us a very different Zala than we’ve seen before. In recent issues she’s been on a rampage killing people left and right, but here she’s different. There is no blind rage, but a girl who demands justice as if she had not just brought violent justice to many lives.
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Cut to Harley Quinn, who seeks out Poison Ivy to ask for help for the El family. Harley is the El family’s jester and she soon learns that it’s not much fun going into the Ivy Forest. Customary to this series, Taylor imbues these characters with familiar traits and the norm in current continuity – they seem to have a one of a kind romance here – and yet their roles and motivations are vastly different. This leads to the first confrontation of the problem, but it is far from the last.
Putri’s art is stellar in this issue, especially in the Ivy/Harley scene. The use of shadows on their faces adds another level of realism which is likely due to Arif Prianto’s colors. The play of light throughout the number is something, adding a warm glow to scenes like the opening or Batman’s mask in a later scene. In one scene, a green glow actually foreshadows what we’ll see on the next page, which is a fantastic detail.
The costumes are also fantastic, especially Wonder Woman’s which have tied rings on her arms and on her tiara. We also take a look at Nightwing’s costume, which is subtle and reminiscent of his blue wing design.
If you enjoyed the many twists and turns, you’ll love this issue as well. I won’t tell, but the final pages will surprise you – Taylor has the audacity to drop a seemingly subtle detail on the last page that works so well with where we leave these characters. The whole series has more or less stuck to who these characters are, but there are changes that end up feeling monumental because of it. Zara and Wonder Woman are together, for example, or the fact that Batman’s father is Jor-El.
At this point, it’s obvious that the pace of this book is not rushed. That’s what it’s all about, and probably why it’s a 12-issue maxi-series, but even with shockingly big twists and good character writing, you put this book down and wonder what happened. actually passed. It’s a blessing and a curse because it’s still so entertaining, but it may also make you wonder if you should have waited to read this book in the collected format.
Prepare yourselves, Black Knights of Steel fans, as Taylor drops another bombshell on readers, Putri lures you in with stunningly beautiful art, and the addictive streak continues. Pound for pound, it’s the best-looking superhero book that also gets the most gasps per issue.
‘Dark Knights of Steel’ #5 is the Week’s Best Superhero Comic
Black Knights of Steel #5
Brace yourself, Dark Knights of Steel fans, as Taylor drops another bombshell on readers, Putri lures you in with stunningly beautiful art, and the addictive series continues. Pound for pound, it’s the best-looking superhero book that also gets the most gasps per issue.
Keeps surprising with twists galore
Really beautiful art and colors
What a cliffhanger!
Every moment is impactful and yet the plot moves at a chilling pace
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