Justice League Dark No. 8 review: Evil finds a way


The Justice League Dark have met an enemy they can’t defeat. The Otherkind have invaded the realm, killing every magic user they can get their hands on, with little to no resistance.

Justice League Dark is one of the most unsettling books being sold right which is a pretty great thing considering that this is one of the only mainstream horror comics current being released by DC or Marvel. There are definitely some great horror comics being released right, i.e. Gideon Falls, The Immortal Hulk, and B.P.R.D.: Hell on Earth, but nothing really in the main DC line, so this series has consistently filled a void that was empty beforehand. Luckily, it’s good, and it continues to be good with this issue.

Horror is one of the purest genres that there is in any medium. It brings out some of the most primal emotions in the audience, aka fear and anxiety, and forces them to confront that which scares them. The audience goes through the same experience as the characters involved, but in order to truly be scary, there need to be characters that the audience cares for. Luckily, James Tynion IV is fantastic at creating teams of characters that you care for and that’s no different here.

Tynion laid the groundwork for the care and concern that you feel for the characters now in the three previous arcs of the series. Because of this, he can get to the action right away and bring about the uneasiness in a way that grabs you. This isn’t the most terrifying issue ever, but there’s an anticipation of something happening throughout the entirety of the issue that causes your heart to beat faster and faster with no relief. This is all because you care for the characters involved. Whether it be Wonder Woman and Zatanna or Bobo and Swamp Thing, you’re terrified for them, thus making the horrors on page even scarier.

Image by DC Comics/Art by Alvaro Martinez Bueno

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The art by Alvaro Martinez Bueno is again fantastic in this issue. He knows how the draw horror so well that he brings out the perfect amount of fear in the reader. This isn’t the scariest issue of the series (that honor goes to issue number 7), but there are some absolutely chilling moments in this issue and some horrific kills.

Some may think that horror is the easiest genre to do, but that simply isn’t true. Many creators (film, television, comics, etc.) fail to understand what would scare their audience in a visceral way and that is what Martinez Bueno does so well. His art scares you in such a visceral way that it’s almost painful to read. He’ll linger on something happening for just one panel more than may be needed just to give that added emphasis to the horror involved, which really ups the scare factor in the best way possible. One kill in this issue in particular, even though the method was seen last issue, is chilling.

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Justice League Dark continues on its merry evil way with another unsettling issue of a great series.