Tom Taylor is back for Injustice: Gods Among Us: Year Three and has knocked it out of the park again – well, at least for the first two thirds of the story, as a different writer takes over for the final third.
So, picking up from where Year Two left off, the war with the Green Lantern Corps is over, but a casualty of that war just happens to have taken the life of someone very dear to John Constantine (yes that’s right boys and girls, Constantine is a DC creation!) and all kinds of magical hell breaks loose.
To put the story so far simply: Year One was focused on the ‘house-hold names’ superheroes, Year Two introduces the galactic war and the Green Lantern Corps story line and both of these have now made way for Year Three – the Magic year!
Fans of DC knew that magic was going to find its way into the Injustice story somehow for several reasons, two of which are that they either know that there are magical characters in the DC Universe, or they know that magic is one of Superman’s few weaknesses.
The weird thing for me was that this Year focused on some of my all-time favourite characters: Raven (my fangirl obsession) and Zatanna, and I love stories about magic. Yet some of the magic from the first two volumes seemed lost. That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy it, I really did, it just wasn’t as strong as Year One or Year Two – and perhaps this is because of the writer switch.
The use of magic did get a bit intrusive at times – it made for a few too many convenient plot points, but it’s a difficult pit fall to avoid because the answer to everything a reader might as is”…well…it’s magic!” so If you can ignore that (or accept it) then you’re golden.
There are a few new narrative mechanisms introduced in Year Three for us to enjoy, one of which is a dream sequence. That’s not as cheesy as it sounds, it’s actually quite haunting and it destroys us as soon as we’re ripped out of it.
Obviously with Year Three introducing a load of new characters, (like Trigon, yay!) there’s the fear that there is too much going on for character development – however that’s not true. A lot of the characters are handled brilliantly, and Harley Quinn is an excellent example of this – she has really become her own character rather than the Joker’s bit on the side. One of my favourite moments in the story actually involved Harley as she chastised Dr Fate for not having earned his title of Doctor like she did (Her real name is Dr Harleen Quinzel) . She then insists on calling him Mr Fate for the rest of the story!
It’s great to see an anti-hero in the truest sense of the word too, and we see more and more characters shifting allegiances throughout.
You can absolutely tell that Tom Taylor stopped writing this about two thirds of the way through this, and a lesser writer (in my opinion) has taken over – which does make me a bit nervous for the remaining two years.
For now, Year Three has a lot of good twists and was still well worth a read!
Are you a fan of magic? You can buy Injustice: Gods Among Us: Year Three here!
[PLEASE NOTE]: I was not paid or sponsored to write this review – all the opinions are honest and my own.