James Robinson (a) Nicola Scott
** SPOILERS AHEAD **
April is DC’s “WTF” month, which means each and every ‘New 52’ title gets a gatefold cover that reveals a shocking new twist and/or revelation. Some of these moments feel more natural than others. Earth 2 #11 features a gatefold cover with Mister Miracle of the New Gods, a character fans have been clamoring for in any universe since the relaunch. Unfortunately, Mister Miracle’s appearance isn’t really part of the story…at all.
This gimmick aside, Earth 2 #11 is another solid issue from James Robinson. This month, he spends the time to move around all the pieces he put into play last issue. The evil Wotan is still the real villain here, reluctant Khalid and his relationship with the spirit of Nabu is the real focal point of this story. Khalid has to get past his own insecurities to accept the destiny he’s faced with. It’s the conversation with Flash that knocks some sense into Khalid and shows him that even someone with no training, no understanding, and no experience can still stand up and face his enemies.
Like many obstacles in our life, Khalid’s struggle to accept his destiny is only as difficult as he makes. The helm of Nabu has power undefined, so it’s understandable if that scares Khalid a bit. The change in Earth 2 #11 has to do with the new Dr. Fate understanding that it’s his own choice whether he let’s Nabu’s power corrupt him or give him the strength to conquer any evil. Pre-‘New 52’, Dr. Fate was a character more or less at war with his own weapon of choice. In this current incarnation, Khalid doesn’t subconsciously battle Nabu’s influence so much as he must work to stave off the insanity that potentially arises from extended exposure to such chaotic magical forces.
It’s fun to see Mister Miracle and Big Barda show up for that one panel, and in the grand scheme of things, these two were bound to be introduced sooner or later. I bring this up again because DC’s mandate to make every April cover some shocking revelation just doesn’t work for every title, Earth 2 being one of them. It very much feels like Robinson was forced into jamming the New Gods connections into Earth 2 #11 that could have easily been in the next issue.