DC Mech #4 is here and continues the exciting and action packed series that I’ve come to really enjoy. Not only does it have a unique take on our favourite DC characters, but each of them have intricate and epic designs along with a slight update to their origin stories.
But before we get into the issue itself let’s take a look at the cover. The standard cover is by interior artist Baldemar Rivas and showcases a rather dismantled Batman mech suit. I have to say this cover really does give us an idea of the scale of these metal giants as we see Batman hovering in space among them. The detail and vibrancy is perfect and really gives you a sci-fi vibe, which is perfect for this series.
The first variant is by Dan Mora and gives us a closer look at The Flash’s mech suit. I have really enjoyed seeing these covers as it really showcases the thought and detail that have gone in to these designs. I really love the parchment background on this piece, it gives it a realistic effect and that with the addition of some sarcastic comments from Barry Allen himself, really makes it look like he’s hand-drawn this piece.
The second variant is by Ricardo López Ortiz and brings us a very anime style action shot of Kal-El and what looks like Jonathan Kent protecting his fallen mech suit from an angry and armed crowd. This is a great piece that again shows the scale of these mechanical beasts. I love the detail and style here, it really works for this series and really brings these characters and their metal counter-parts to life.
DC Mech #4 opens up with a rather heated protest from the citizens of Smallville who are against the ‘aliens’ and ‘monsters’ falling from the sky. This sequence really showcases how people react if they don’t understand something or someone as they throw Kal-El into the same category. This moment provides us with a classic and perfect pep talk from Jonathan Kent who comforts Kal in the most ‘Pa Kent’ way and it is beautiful.
It’s moments like this that I adore when it comes to Superman stories, and writer Kenny Porter has handled it perfectly. I love how humble Superman is, not only in this series but in general. He saves people every single day despite his own troubles and what he is going through and despite how big or small the gesture. Though this take on Kal/Superman is very different to what we know in the sense that he hasn’t been on Earth long and hasn’t been around The Kents long, he has the exact same persona.
During this time one of the anti-alien protesters become suspicious of Jonathan Kent, who (as we know) had a wreckage fall near his home. That suspiciousness leads to spying as the protests finds that the wreckage that crash-landed near their farm was in fact the alien. Without thinking, they decide to take action and it just goes to show regardless of how much good you do, there will always be those who oppose you.
DC Mech #4 is very heavy on the origin stories, but with it being a limited series, there’s a lot of story to tell and Porter has drip fed it to us perfectly. In this issue we get more depth into Wally Allen’s and Bruce Wayne’s story and they’re told in a way to encourage others and make them feel welcome or at ease. Both stories are rather traumatic and brutal, that can especially be said for Bruces’ story which involves a huge yet unexpected organisation within the DC universe. Porter really has thought of everything in this issue, it has been fascinating to see our favourite heroes with different backgrounds and seeing how their lives have been shaped in other ways.
The interior art is by Baldemar Rivas with colours by Mike Spicer and letters by Tom Napolitano and it is fantastic, as it has been for the entire series so far. It’s vibrant, fun and completely fitting with the sci-fi theme. Rivas, Spicer and Napolitano really have a way with bringing these characters and their atmospheres to life. Whether it’s on the Kent farm, at the Watchtower or in Space, we know exactly who and where these heroes and their metal counterparts are. The use of onomatopoeia was also great in this issue and it really gives a gesture toward the scale of these mech suits.
Another thing I loved about this issue was the fact that it reintroduces some classic Superman tropes, which I (as a Superman fan) really appreciated! These tropes include; Martha Kent making Kal a cape, the introduction of Kelex, a rather different take on the iconic Lex Luthor battle suit, but most importantly the introduction of a much loved and misunderstood Superman villain – who I have to say has one AWESOME mech suit!
DC Mech #4 is a rather emotional issue which delves into the backgrounds of our heroes and their trauma, whilst expertly setting up what’s to come in the series. This is one you can really get lost in and is a fresh new take on what we know and love.