Written by: Robert Venditti
Art by: Eddy Barrows
Inks by: Eber Ferreira
Colors by: Adriano Lucas
Letters by: Andworld Design
Release Date: March 27th, 2019
I’ve always been a fan of the Multiverse, a myriad of worlds where anything is possible – a vampire Batman, a Soviet Superman, a criminal Justice League. So, of course, a world like Earth-X would exist in the Multiverse – a world where the Nazis won World War II and conquered America. A world where people such as the Freedom Fighters fight the good fight and lead the Resistance against tyranny and oppression.
This issue opens up with some pretty intense imagery – the killing of a Bald Eagle by a Nazi soldier. This act continues to drive home the fact that America as we know it is no longer recognizable and has been replaced by something heinous. The soldiers argue about the possible extinction of this magnificent bird before being ordered back to military formation. Then readers are treated to another horrific image – the defamation of Mount Rushmore into Mount Reichsmehr, complete with the faces of General Rommel and Hitler.
Our heroes are working in secret, preparing to disrupt the upcoming Nazi rally and graduation. Their target? Mount Reichsmehr, which they completely demolish and ruin the graduation ceremony, embarrassing the Nazi regime and their Fuhrer. As this spectacle occurs, readers are greeted to a familiar and welcome sight – Uncle Sam.
We return to the Fuhrer dealing with the repercussions of the Freedom Fighters’ attack the only way a weak man knows how – with pills and drink. He is soon joined by his son, a demented man who delights in torturing his father and his fearful nature. As they argue, we are taken back to the Freedom Fighters preparing for their next mission. The Human Bomb and Doll Woman have an emotional moment as they talk about why exactly they fight and what they have lost. Venditti does a great job making these characters seem more real to readers. They’re not just cookie-cutter superheroes. These are people who are facing an impossible mission – resistance against a Nazi juggernaut that has already won.
We close the issue with more brutality from the Fuhrer’s son before Uncle Sam makes his public and triumphant return. Punching a Nazi in the face and declaring there is more to come. Can’t get much more American than that.
Eddy Barrows’ work is a great complement to the story being laid out by Venditti. His vivid panels bring life to the imagery that we see throughout the issue. The death of the Bald Eagle, Uncle Sam bursting from the ground, the coming thunderstorm. All are done fantastically and convey a great deal of emotion. Every panel with Uncle Sam forces me to closely study each pencil stroke, the blue hues, the light, the facial details. Barrows is pretty awesome.
I found it hard to finish this issue compared to the previous ones. Aside from Uncle Sam returning, it felt like a filler issue to me. There was too much set-up for future issues, which does worry me a bit since this is only a 12 issue maxi-series. We certainly don’t want the closing issues of the series to feel rushed. Yet, I’m invested in the characters and the Earth-X story, so I’ll continue to read!