If you were disappointed that I didn’t review The Multiversity guidebook from last month, sorry but I honestly didn’t see much point in reviewing it. With that out of the way it looks like the pages of Multiversity have turned to a world where the The Third Reich’s dream came true. For the first time in this series, the book isn’t centered around characters who you would call “heroes” from our perspective. I mean come on we are talking about Nazi’s and a Superman that has been brainwashed by Adolph Hitler can’t possibly feel remorse right?
When you take a look at where the word Superman and dive deeper into the actual definition for the word, and you look at what Superman is when you strip him of all his morality. you have Adolph Hitler’s dream. The Ubermensch was Hitler goal for his perfect Aryan race, and when you look at Superman outside of having blonde hair and blue eyes, he is the personified.
If I had to take a stab at what Grant was trying to tell the readers with this issue, it’s that perspective is everything. On our side, the Nazi’s are synonymous with evil, but to the soldiers, and civilians their perspective was right. Just as in today’s world ISIS believes they are the one’s who are on the right side of history. Morrison explores this dichotomy of perspective with Overman along with this universes iteration of the Justice League and Uncle Sam and The Freedom Fighters.
With how Grant structures the story, Uncle Sam is the villain as he is shown killing innocent people for the sake of freedom. Yes we can all agree that what occurred in Nazi Germany is not up for debate on the morality scale, but when you exam any other countries history you’re going to find some horrible atrocities.that they’ve committed. Again it’s all about perspective and getting people to see different perspectives, and if that’s what Morrison’s goal was then mission accomplished.
Looking at Overman as a character, it’s interesting to see that he wasn’t a complete tool of Hitler’s ideology. Yes he still believes in the totalitarianism, but he feels remorse over the ethnic cleansing, and feeling depressed over the lost of Overgirl. In way this could be interpreted that Superman no matter what universe and no matter what side he is on, Superman is inherently good no matter how warped his mind becomes. Oddly enough it’s only Superman who even feels remorse for the actions of the past, with the remaining Justice League members not agreeing with him. What does that say about the Batman, Flash, Green Lantern and the others? Is it because they are the bi-products of a Nazi regime or are the characters themselves side with whatever the status quo just happens to be?
I was a tad shocked when I learned that Jim Lee was going to be the artist for this issue. With that being said this was Jim Lee’s best pencils in quite some time. Naturally the first thing you’ll notice is how super detailed each page and subsequentialy each panel is brimmed with detail. Perfect example being the double page splash of Overman with the members of the Justice League. Something Lee doesn’t enough credit for is his ability to tell a story with his art, as each individual character comes to life with vivid expressions and even more expressive body language. Also Lee simply know how to put on a show in the medium of comics with his well done double page splash pages that perfectly capture the majesty or horror of the given moment.
The Multiversity: Mastermen earns a 5/5