Black Hammer: The End #1 – Review
Black Hammer: The End #1 Review
Writer – Jeff Lemire
Artist – Malachi Ward
Colour Flats – Bryce Davidson
Letters – Nate Piekos
Published by: Dark Horse Comics
The latest offering from Dark Horse Comics and the latest book to jump right on the Multiverse train, or the Paraverse train as it appears in this book, is Black Hammer: The End. Following in the footsteps of a whole lot of other properties, multiverses being the definite flavour of the month right now, the book takes us to a number of different versions of Earth. And, somewhat ironically, it reads like an 80s/90s Marvel comic.
The book follows a group of heroes traveling the Paraverse guided by an algorithm supplied by their robot, Talky-Walky (another great name!!), and the computer, Archive (meh). The group is jumping from dimension to dimension in order to bring together the greatest heroes that are left to fight the big bad that is destroying Earths, Anti-God (medium). Pretty standard stuff really.
All the while our good guys are looking for a would-be leader to lay the smackdown on Anti-God, Black Hammer, or at least a version of them. The trouble is, one of Hammer’s variants had gone dark side and is murdering as many other versions of themselves as they can find, stealing their powers along the way. Saving the Paraverse is never friggin easy, is it?
It isn’t easy to come up with a new, completely unique story when it comes to multiverses. You gonna kill all your doubles and take their power? That’s The One, Jet Lee, good movie. Want to go back and change something to create an alternate timeline? See Back to the Future 2. Marvel and DC have done that, and pretty much everything else. But, in 2023, almost every story idea has been covered, so the only thing to do is make your story entertaining and your characters likable.
Black Hammer pulls this off to a point. I mean, Inspector Insector, the 1950s esq detective who is also a giant grasshopper, needs his own spin-off right now. Some of the characters look fun, and Lemire gives us a pretty interesting starting point that hints at some cool stuff to come. But there is nothing massively unique here. Though it is hard to judge from a first issue alone.
The art and the colours are quite simplistic, but look good and do a great job of getting us through the story. The speech can be a little confusing and jumpy at times, but works well when you consider that all these people are from different versions of the same universe. It certainly looks like there are going to be some interesting twists going forward, and a few surprise reveals have been hinted at that make this book well worth a look.
Jay is an Auto Electrician and wanna-be writer from Manchester, UK. A long-time lover of comics, books, movies, and TV, he decided to try his hand at writing some of them around 2016. Since then, he has produced and self-published a number of comics, including ALV and the KA Anthology, and also his first novel, Domeinion.
Jay’s first full-length graphic novel was released in 2022, Knights Vs Pirates, with the small press publisher Reckless Hero, and remains a member of the group to this day. Jay can also be found on the video/podcasts The Movie Garage and Man Vs Reality. not action figures.