The world is overrun with Anti-Life Zombies and our heroes are stranded! When we last left the heroes of Earth-2, they had found a possible cure within the head of Cyborg but were cut off from their way home by a Zombie Wonder Woman attack. What’s to become of Batman, Superman, Green Canary, and the rest? What of the cure? Let’s find out in issue two of DCeased: Dead Planet!
We open up this issue with a quick look at this universe’s Roy Harper a.k.a. Arsenal, one of the few superheroes left on the dead planet. He’s protecting a small group of survivors in Chicago. I say quick look because he’s quickly killed by a Zombie Fire who incinerates him. Luckily this universe’s Shadowpact shows up to kick Anti-Life Zombie butt and protect the survivors. If you’re not familiar, Shadowpact is an established team back in the main DC universe but this version is just all the superhero survivors who didn’t leave the planet at the end of the original story.
So John Constantine, Zatanna, Blue Devil, Detective Chimp, Red Hood, Ravager and Ragman come to pick up where Roy left off and tear up the zombie hordes. Quite literally in Detective Chimp’s case as he’s ripping the arms off of zombies like a wookie who just lost a game of space chess. The team is doing pretty well at protecting the survivors when Swamp Thing appears out of nowhere and kills the remaining zombies with his plant powers. Swamp Thing is in need of Constantine and his crew for a mission in Australia to aid a garden that’s a friend of his. John ignores him and focuses more on getting the survivors to Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy’s garden in Gotham. This strikes a nerve with Swamp Thing and he curses him out. An impressed John Constantine then agrees and has Red Hood and Ravager take the survivors to Harley while the rest of the team heads to Australia with Swamp Thing.
As Red Hood and Ravager drop the survivors off at Gotham Gardens, the book explains why this is a safe place. Basically, Ivy has her plants create very thick barriers to deter the regular zombies while the Tower of Fate wards off any other threats. Cassie Sandsmark / Wonder Woman shows up holding a bleeding Jon Kent / Superman, begging for help. Doctor Fate assures them that his wounds are magical in origin and he can fix them, inviting both the heroes and the rest of the Earth-2 rescue party into the garden. We get a nice reunion between the Earth-2 characters and the dead planet survivors, specifically Red Hood and Damian Wayne / Batman who is overjoyed to see his Bat-Family. He remarks how Bruce making Damian the new Batman was probably his best decision ever. Green Canary and the zombified corpse of Green Arrow are barred from entry by Ivy to keep the infection from coming into her garden, which Canary agrees to. Harley’s group finds out there’s a cure and that it’s inside Cyborg. The two groups team-up using science, technology, and magic to ensure the cure happens.
Over in Australia Swamp Thing and the rest of the Shadowpact finds the garden in disarray, being contained in a bunker, surrounded by hellfire, which in-turn is surrounded by a moat of blood. But that moat isn’t blood, it’s Zombie Plastic Man! He slaughters all of the Shadowpact except for John Constantine. Constantine soon finds himself falling into Eel O’Brien’s mouth while “a greater evil” from the bunker looks on, ending the issue.
DCeased: Dead Planet #2 along with Tom Taylor and Trevor Hairsine continues to deliver. It’s both fun and hopeful while also being grim and gruesome. This issue builds from the last issue as well as the last series. It has the same tone as those books and continues to world build instead of just treading water around them. We continue to see more of what's happened to some of our favorite heroes in this universe and also get to see other heroes who are left on the planet. I think it was a bold move to end the issue with the death of some survivors of the last book and fan favorite characters. Killing off at least one character per issue is to be expected but the death of the entire Shadowpact at the end caught me a bit off guard.
One complaint for this issue is that it seemed a little too fast paced in that it would cut to the next scene before I could digest the last one. Aside from that, this was a great issue continuing a great story with superb art. I’m really looking forward to the rest of the series and seeing how the story will progress from the search for the cure to the real monsters among the zombies and the shadowy villain teased at the end of the issue.
Verdict: 8/10 Dead Planet Survivors
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