The Death of Magic arc has been pretty decent. It’s interesting to see members of the team have their powers go haywire, especially Constantine losing his ability to tell a lie. However, this story has lost a bit of its luster. Lemire and Fawkes are great storytellers, so it’s very disappointing to see this arc lose so much steam.
Issue 17 isn’t bad by any means, but necessary plot threads are not furthered in any way, making it feel like nothing goes on. The biggest plot development is Tim Hunter deciding to accept his destiny and lead an army of magical creatures to battle against the forces of Epoch. The problem with this is he just changes his mind and attitude with no progression towards it. What the heck changed his mind?
Jeff Lemire and Ray Fawkes are still able to make the core JLD characters very interesting. The best part of this issue is Frankenstein, since he’s still relatively new to the series and it’s still fun to see his role in the group. Deadman and Constantine have an interesting back and forth and since Constantine can’t lie at this point, his reactions deepen the character immensely.
Mikel Janin does a wonderful job drawing this issue. Tim Hunter’s magical army looks stunning, with interesting looking faces and torsos. Aging Madame Xanadu looks positively grotesque and really makes the reader feel a sense of impending doom for the character. Janin also draws a very detailed Frankenstein, with some creepy looking stitch work and scars.
Justice League Dark #17 doesn’t deliver the goods, but it definitely leaves fans hopeful for a stunning and satisfying end to the story. These characters are still well written and too interesting for this series to not get back on track. Let’s not give Lemire and Fawkes too much guff –this series is still one of the best DC titles.