DOOMSDAY CLOCK #10 / Writer: Geoff Johns / Artist: Gary Frank / Colorist: Brad Anderson / Letterer: Rob Leigh / Cover Artist: Gary Frank & Brad Anderson / Publisher: DC Comics / Published: May 29. 2019
Into the Multiverse
Reminiscent of Watchmen #4’s origin of Dr. Manhattan, we get a similar time-switching yet linear story of Dr. Manhattan entering the DC Universe proper. The narrative bounces back and forth: him first getting there and meeting Carver Coleman who played in the Nathanial Dusk films; fighting heroes on Mars in the present; going through and messing with the DC timeline, and so on. The whole book so far has beautiful double meanings including the Nathaniel Dusk story in the background similar to the Crimson Corsair tale in the preceding series. This issue continues it all in Moore-worthy Dr. Manhattan narration.
A World of Hope
Dr. Manhattan has been building suspense in the background of Geoff Johns and Gary Frank’s Doomsday Clock, leaving readers wondering what Moore’s superhero from a non-super-powered world is doing in the mainstream DC Universe. Having hinted at Dr. Manhattan’s goals here and there throughout the series, Johns and Frank fully flesh out what he did here in issue 10. Entering the multiverse after the events of the classic Watchmen, he meets and studies a man named Carver Coleman. Seeing an innate good in people, a form of hope, that was missing in his home Earth intrigues the good Doctor, and he decides to study this world. Then Superman happens.
Dr. Manhattan becomes obsessed with Superman for reasons he doesn’t understand after his first appearance in 1938. He watches this world of heroes change as other beings of power like Jay Garrick’s Flash or Alan Scott’s Green Lantern and many more become prominent, only to change and change again in one crisis after another. Superman is the constant in each iteration. There is still hope, so Dr. Manhattan tests this, changes things, and causes, in a canonical sense, the New 52 reboot, introducing a harder world like his own. He turns himself from a misunderstood hero to the villain. No book has made me hate a character more for something I figured was going to happen anyway – which is good, you’re supposed to hate the villain, and that is what Dr. Manhattan becomes and sees in himself.
Battle of the Century
This book has been leading up to one thing readers have been ready for since its announcement. Sure, some plot points need and deserve clarification, like the location of Mime and Marionette’s son or Ozymandias’s schemes. Nevertheless, the big bout between the Man of Steel and the Atomic Titan is on its way, and others will be caught in the middle. Sure, issues have been postponed, but this book has literally been a new Watchmen in more ways than one. As with most events, Doomsday Clock will change the DC Universe, but this one does a marvelous job of crafting a multi-faceted tale, as one should expect from the mind behind Infinite Crisis. Then there’s Gary Frank’s gorgeous art capturing the Watchmen characters in a way I thought only Dave Gibbons could. Frank’s art makes DC’s characters feel like icons again and reminds us what makes them great. We get to see a lot of versions of Superman in this issue, from his first appearance to the present, and they all look astonishingly detailed. That being said, this series has been good, even phenomenal, and I’m excited for the next two issues to end it all.
Verdict: 4 out of 5