BLACK HAMMER / JUSTICE LEAGUE: HAMMER OF JUSTICE! #1 / Writer: Jeff Lemire / Artist: Michael Walsh / Letterer: Nate Peikos of Blambot / Cover Artist: Michael Walsh / Publisher: DC Comics with Dark Horse Comics / Published: July 10, 2019
Jeff Lemire (Descender, The Terrifics) has built quite the expansive universe with the Black Hammer title. In fact, Black Hammer had an encyclopedia called The World of Black Hammer Encyclopedia that came out on the third of this month. And what could be a better next step for this universe than having it cross over with one of the top two superhero universes? In this title, Jeff Lemire and Michael Walsh (Zero) come together for what might be the best crossover of the year, where Black Hammer’s stranded heroes swap places with DC’s premiere super-team, the Justice League.
If you haven’t read any of Lemire’s Black Hammer Universe before this, you’re missing out on a beautiful homage to classic hero archetypes (which still tell original stories). Abraham Slam is Captain-America-meets-Wildcat while Golden Gail is Shazam-meets-Golden-Girls, and every other character is just as enjoyable. I’m excited to see Barbalien meet Martian Manhunter (to whom he’s a direct parallel), and more of the Black Hammer going through a DC story.
On the other side, I’m also excited to see the Justice League go through the Black Hammer experience of being trapped on a farm. In particular, it’s interesting to see how they accept the idea of being in a small town they can’t escape for ten years while the lost heroes of Black Hammer defend their world. Then there’s this Stranger that caused the switch — what’s his deal? Is he a DC Character, a parody of a DC classic, or a Black Hammer original? Nevertheless, this crossover has a lot of neat plot points that I’m excited to see developed, especially if the Easter eggs in this first issue are any indication. I am so hype for what comes next.
Verdict: 5 out of 5