Doomsday Clock #2 – Review

I feel the need to review a comic that I never thought I would review, much less in this way.Doomsday Clock is DC’s grand event that grows from the revelations in DC Universe: Rebirth that someone messed with the DC Universe on a cosmic scale. Of course it was heavily implied that this person was Dr. Manhattan from Watchmen, the classic series from Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons that was most likely never intended to have a life past it’s initial 12-issue run, much less crossover with the “regular” DC Universe. I went into this series, fully prepared to hate it. On the surface, it completely screws with the legacy of probably the pinnacle of what comic books are capable of. To adequately assess the series, it’s necessary to take it for what it is, a comic book.

Doomsday Clock #2

Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Gary Frank
In Shops: Dec 27, 2017
SRP: $4.99

DC and Watchmen characters collide at last! The story that began in DC UNIVERSE: REBIRTH #1 comes to a thrilling and unexpected crescendo in the pages of this titanic twelve-issue series by the all-star team that brought you BATMAN: EARTH ONE and SHAZAM!
In this second chapter: The Dark Knight discovers another relic from the Watchmen world. Lex Luthor pays a devil’s bargain. And killer clowns trek through Gotham seeking a madman.


Like I said, I’m reviewing this not for it’s impact, but on it’s own merits as a comic book story. I’m not trying to look at this as some type of exploitation of a series held in reverence for many, many years. I’m trying sincerely to judge it on its own merits.

In terms of writing, I can appreciate the building of the Marionette and the Mime. The opening scene, a flashback, serves not only to establish their importance in the story, but to build the reputation of two characters we’ve not seen before they were broken out of jail in the previous issue. 

Ozymandias doesn’t seem to be written as the same character as in Watchmen, but as the character needs to be for the story to progress. That’s the flaw in this comic. There is a story that Geoff Johns is telling and the characters take a back seat to advancing that story. To his credit, Johns tries to keep the mischaracterization to a minimum, but we see a little break in how Luthor and Batman react to intruders that are complete strangers. 

Gary Franks is an artist with admirable skills. He holds to the nine panel grid for the bulk of the book, but doesn’t fully commit to it. When he does break from it, it’s jarring. Otherwise, he shows his skill as a storyteller very well. 

The book also uses the Watchmen method of text pieces after the main story. Unfortunately, they seem far removed from the main story. The advance of a subplot that should affect almost every other DC title seems to add an event nature to this series, which I personally don’t care for. That could be just something I feel strongly about. 

Rating: 8 (out of 10)</strong >

Overall, this is not a bad comic, and when taken on its own merits, is quite good. I have doubts about how it may explode in its scope, so I remain cautious about this series.