Updated: Jan 25
Writer: Tom Taylor
Artists: Trevor Hairsine & Stefano Gaudiano
Colorist: Rain Beredo
Publisher: DC Comics
The madness continues in issue 2 of the metahuman zombie apocalypse that is DCEASED. Where issue 1 was just and introductory series of horrible events, Taylor slows it down for us and gives the set up for another series of horrible events. I read the pages and with each turn, I await a page
where yet another JL member either turns into a rage monster or falls because of one.
This issue starts us off by giving us an update on what’s going with maritime hero, Aquaman. He finds a freighter adrift in the Northern Atlantic. At this point, it’s safe to assume that Arthur has no idea of what is happening on the mainland. After a brisk inspection of the ship’s deck, he stumbles upon the the gore fest taking place within the ship’s hulls when he walks right into an entire hanger filled with Anti-Life Zombies. He quickly rushed overboard by the horde and the panels slide into its first cutaway back to Metropolis. It’s here we find ourselves back with Superman, The Super Sons and Lois Lane, picking back up where we left them the last issue. A few panels reveal to us their intentions of making it the Daily Planet building find a way to communicate with whomever else might have survived the technovirus. The next page cuts away to Gotham City, to update us on 2 of Gotham’s own, Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy. Again, safe to
assume they are unaware of the chaos that’s happening. Ivy, being the ever supporting partner that she is to Harley, is pep talking Harley in preparation for finally breaking it off with the Joker. Trevor Hairsine presents scene’s close with one of the most unnerving depictions of the Joker, I’ve ever seen: a Smiling Zombie.
And finally the last cutaway of this issue brings us to 3 more JL members outside of Metropolis, camping and trying to enjoy a nice evening under the stars. Dinah Lance & Oliver Queen are sitting by the fire giving Hal Jordan a hard time about not being the outdoorsy type. Hal being Hal decides to turn in early and head to his tent. The quiet of the night there comes to an abrupt stop when Hal becomes infected (via what I assume to be his cellphone) and Ollie and Dinah engage in a short, but tragic battle with Hal. Here’s where my heart starts to wrench a little more. Dinah, in defense of Ollie, attacks Hal with a sonic scream. A scream loud enough for a certain Krytonian to hear. As the green smoke disappears, it’s revealed that Canary’s sonic scream was enough to kill Hal Jordan.
Yup, that’s right. Taylor killed off my favorite Lantern (Hal Jordan is the greatest Lantern of any color. Don’t @ me.). Immediately after the two realize that Hal’s dead, the Green Lantern’s ring does what it does and immediately finds it’s new host: Dinah Lance. It’s at that moment we find that Clark made it just in time to witness the Canary’s costume change into one more fitting of Green Lantern. Arrow and Canary accompany Supes back to the Daily Planet where he left Lois and Super Sons. They're greeted with the one good piece of news anyone in the entire comic has mentioned. They’ve gotten in contact with Batman! It’s here Taylor, yet again, begins to pull at our heartstrings and does so using multiple sources. Batman reveals to them that he’s infected (heartstring). Hairsine gives us the look on Clark’s face (heartstring). Bruce’s managed to slow down the effects of it long enough to study the infection, coming to the conclusion that everyone has been infected are all Anti-life zombies. The bad news continues on when he tells them that the only cure is to kill them (heartstring). Ollie, still obviously in shock of what happened to Hal, shows his disbelief that not even the Batman can get everyone out of this (heartstring). Bruce then relays a message to Damian, saying he’s left behind something for him, something that Bruce knows he would’ve “earned one day” (heartstring). It’s there the transmission cuts off. Bruce’s transformation is finally complete and this issue ends with Alfred Pennyworth saying goodbye to his son with with a shotgun (heartstring).
I feel as though Taylor likes to pull people’s hearts out and then within a few panels, put back into their chests. It’s writing like this that sets him apart and why I personally enjoy it so much. His pairing with Trevor Hairsine in this series seems to be good match. The dread and the loss of the story only seems to be amplified by the well crafted visual sequences and the gore, cutting away at just the right moments. I’m at the edge of my seat. There have been multiple, well-places cliffhangers, 2 major deaths in only the second issue, and me, getting caught tearing up at my desk because of a comic, how could this not be my pick for this last Wednesday’s best release?