After months of teasing, misdirection, and red herrings, the finale of DC Comics’ Event Leviathan finally told us who the heck Leviathan is.
As the head of the spy organization of the same name that, Leviathan destroyed all the covert super-spy organizations and evil secret societies in the DC Universe in one fell swoop. The six-issue miniseries, from Brian Michael Bendis and Alex Maleev, followed a group of the DC Universe’s greatest detectives, as they tried to figure out who Leviathan was in a single night, before the rest of their plan could be put into effect.
Bendis maintained that Leviathan wasn’t a new character, but someone who existed in DC Comics canon. And as revealed by Event Leviathan #6, that someone was a relatively unknown superhero with a long origin in DC Comics history: Manhunter.
Like 1940s comics characters who never reached the popularity of a Justice League member, Manhunter has been through waves of reinvention. He began as a non-costumed crime fighter, but was revived several times as a red-clad and masked vigilante detective — and as an army of robots called the Manhunters who preceded the Green Lantern Corps. as a failed attempt to police the galaxy.
Now, he’s one of Superman’s canniest foes. We’ll just have to wait and see how long this incarnation sticks!
What else is happening in the pages of our favorite comics? I’ll tell you. Welcome to Polygon’s weekly list of the books that our comics editor, me, enjoyed over the past seven days. It’s part society pages of superhero lives, part reading recommendations, part “look at this cool art.” Let’s get started!
Mark Shaw, the 1980s incarnation Manhunter, turned out to be Leviathan. He was a human man empowered for costumed crime-fighting by the remnants of the ancient robot Manhunter army. Now he’s gone all mastermind-y trying to remake the world in a better image, etc. etc.. You know how this villain stuff goes.
Far Sector #1
N.K. Jemisin and Jamal Campbell’s Far Sector finally kicked off this week and it’s got a great hook, great worldbuilding, and absolutely gorgeous art. If you like science-fiction mysteries, you should get in on the ground floor with this one.
I’m still waiting for the real plot of The Batman’s Grave to show itself, but also loving how Ellis writes Bruce and Alfred.
Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy #3
Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy is a comic about women defending their girlfriends (and I don’t mean friends who are girls), and I’m really into this Ivy-makes-armor-out-of-bark look.
I’d fall for those big blue puppy dog eyes, too, Lois.
Wonder Woman #82
Hey! It’s the Wonder-Woman of China! I’m so glad someone out there is remembering that the Justice League of China exists and is great.
If you read one comic this week, make it the finale of The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl, if only for the scene with Galactus. It’s a beautiful metaphor about dealing with loss and necessary change, for how to navigate the ever shifting status quo of Marvel and DC comics characters, and also is the book’s creators speaking directly to its many kid-aged fans who have to say goodbye. It almost made me cry.
Meanwhile, in X-Men #2, two sentient islands did some very personal business and now the mutants’ utopia is, uh, bigger.
Black Panther and the Agents of Wakanda #3
I’m a simple woman: A comic makes me laugh out loud, I put it in the roundup.
Runaways gets a runner-up prize for Best Scene This Week, in a bit where all the characters try on new costumes from a giant closet. Kris Anka nails these faces, especially Nico’s girlfriend, Karolina (top right).
ElfQuest: Stargazer’s Hunt #1
I thought that some of you might like to know that ElfQuest is back with a new story and it’s about Skywise being very gay.
Reaver #5 has my favorite kind of reveal: The powerful old sorcerer jerk with a mute female slave turned out to actually be a corpse being puppeted by a mute female sorcerer. If I had a dime for every time that happened to me...