TRINGENUITY 28: "Trinity" Commentary

Mon, December 15th, 2008 at 12:01pm PST | Updated: December 15th, 2008 at 12:02pm

Comic Books
CBR News Team, Editor

"Trinity" #28 on sale now

By Brian K. Eason & Justin Eger

“We’re in the right place.” – Nemesis

Welcome to TRINGENUITY, CBR's ongoing commentary of DC Comics' weekly superhero series, "Trinity." The title is divided into two features; the first focuses on Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman, while the second feature portrays background or tangential events that relate to the ongoing lead storyline. "Trinity" is a weekly series that is promised to be epic in scale and help define the trio of heroes' mythical place in the DC Universe.

PREVIOUSLY

The citizens of Opal City experienced a cascading number of changes as the universe tried to correct itself. Tarot explained to Charity, the town's resident fortuneteller, that the Earth is lost without the Trinity. In the city of St. Roch, the League, the JSI and the cybernetic Heywood Corps were assaulted by giant monster. Meanwhile, Morgaine Le Fey and Enigma discovered Konvikt's real name, Xalitan Xor. Shaking Konvikt's hand, Le Fey completed the ritual, transforming Konvikt into something more than what he was. Finally, Gangbuster convinced Carter Hall to once again take up the mantle of Hawkman and save Earth.

In the backup feature, the Dreambound freed themselves from prison with help from the Trans-Volitional Man. Joined by Primat, Swashbuckler and Sun Chained In Ink, the Dreambound began a recruitment drive to build Morgaine an army.

TRINITY #28

We start the issue as those closest to the Trinity meet in a cave near Happy Harbor, Rhode Island. Alfred is leading Lois Lane, Nemesis, Donna Troy, Richie Grayson and Interceptor to locations that resonate with the Trinity, and this place is one where they all came together. In the cave, the three mount ancient artifacts associated with the symbols of Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman and perform a ritual that helps the group to remember their missing guardians. When the ritual completes, the town below is no longer Happy Harbor, but rather a small bronze-age village populated by aliens who render judgment on a thief. Each judges represents a different member of the Trinity, and they come to a just and fair conclusion. As the heroes watch the scene, they turn to see that in this time and place that the mountainside has been carved to resemble stylized versions of the missing heroes.

Meanwhile, members of the Justice Society International, aided by the now-youthful Flash, Green Lantern and Hawkman, try to contain the Dreambound and their new recruits as the villains break out more and more prisoners from prisons around the world. As the JSI fights, Carter Hall and some of the greatest minds in the world track down the source of the entire world’s problems, only be distracted by further prison breaks. Still, the JSI is not without allies, and Tomorrow Woman rushes to stop the latest wave of supervillains, but is disassembled when her powers react badly with those of the Trans-Volitional Man.

COMMENTARY

Brian Eason: Happy Harbor, Rhode Island. Original headquarters of...

Justin Eger: The Justice League of America!

BE: This place has a lot of history. The Secret Sanctuary (sometimes Justice Mountain) first appeared in "The Brave and the Bold" #28  (March, 1960). The headquarters was used by the JLA, Young Justice (hence all the pizza boxes)...

JE: How could I have forgotten about Young Justice?

BE: ... the android Hourman, and Grant Morrison's version of the Doom Patrol. Happy Harbor was also the home of JLA mascot Snapper Carr. While I have seen citations that this is where the original Doom Patrol sacrificed themselves to spare a town from destruction, that was not Happy Harbor, but, rather Codsville, Maine. Recently the Secret Sanctuary appeared in "Final Crisis: Legion of Three Worlds" #2 (October 2008), when Brainiac 5 and company go to Happy Harbor to find a "crystallized nexus of all Earths from all parallel universes."

JE: In short, its home for a lot of heroes.

BE: I am very happy that Kurt Busiek made this the first stop on his tour of places key to the Trinity.

 
JE: It’s a nice nod to the history we all share through these comics.

BE: Wow, without Bruce Wayne's influence, Dick Grayson turned into a real jerk.

JE: No doubt. To believe that he got sucked in by Tony Zucco, of all people.

BE:  The crime boss that killed his parents.
JE: And without Batman there to help him along, Dick probably never even learned the truth. Or, if he did, he'd gone so native by that point, it no longer mattered.

BE:  I imagine it being a horrible truth that resulted in Zucco extorting the Haly Circus owners and stepping in to care for the poor orphan.

JE: No doubt to make himself look better in the eyes of the law, but Dick isn’t alone in the odd changes.

BE: It's a weird mix. Alfred is an adventurer, Dick is a Jerk, Donna is mousey, Lois is a shrew, Interceptor is merciless, and Nemesis actually seems nicer.
JE: Yeah, it's an eclectic mix, and everyone seems to be a direct opposite of what they are in our world. It could be argued otherwise for Alfred and Nemesis, but it's pretty direct.

BE: It's amazing to see the direct impact of the Trinity on these characters.

JE: I'll say. Any single one of them would have been (and was) jarring, but all of them, so torn from their true selves. It's pretty epic.

BE: Each of the Trinity has an ancient artifact.

JE: Let's see, there's the Gitchika Maumee for the bat spirit, the Medallion of Sonzrr that's linked to the cloaked flying champion and the Amazonian Chains of Submission.

BE: Very symbolic. It points out, once again, that the Trinity must exist, that have always, in some form, existed. Even as concepts.

JE: An interesting exploration of the heroic archetype, but we don't rest there for long, as the team decides to try and summon a new link to the Trinity.

BE: And the comment by Lois about Superman's famous curl was priceless.

JE: Absolutely. A perfect touch to remind everyone that Lois is married to part of the Trinity in the real world.

BE: And at the end of the ritual, the companions have been transported to another time. One where bronze-age aliens live where Happy Harbor was.

JE: And where those same aliens worship aspects of the Trinity.

BE:  Their veneration is well placed, concepts of good and righteousness. I like that the three Lords each represent a different member of the Trinity and that within that, they symbolize something different. The Judgelord is Batman, the Sunlord is Superman, and the Truthlord is Wonder Woman.

The Truthlord helps the people to find truth and not rush to judgment

JE: Truth, Justice and the American Way, perhaps?

BE: Where have we heard that concept before in these pages?

JE: I haven't a clue.

BE:  For the readers, way back in "Trinity" #6, Tarot noted that all three members of the Trinity represented "Truth, Justice, and the American Way" in some aspect.

JE: That’s right, and I believe we spent a good deal of time talking about that very thing right here, as well.

BE: I am also happy to see that the three philosophies work together to find truth and justice.

JE: I liked how they balance each other out and end up getting the best out of the situation.

BE: Like the Trinity itself. They are a balance of powers. Mercy, justice, and truth. 

JE: No one aspect overpowering the others. Such activity might lead to chaos and ruin, but each of the leaders in the tribe has the wisdom to seek other counsel.

BE: And now we know the origins of the mountain carvings that look like the Trinity - it's this culture.

The mountain carvings of the Trinity

JE: And still linked to the mountainous home of the original JLA. Very cool.

BE: When a place has this much history in the DCU, I think it draws more and more events until it becomes a nexus. I think Alfred's ritual proves this out. 

JE: I'll buy that. Perhaps we'll see more use of Happy Harbor in the near future. Looks like the Dreambound wasn't content to stop their recruiting drive at just one prison last issue.

BE: No indeed, when Morgaine said she wanted an army, she was talking about large numbers. As we pointed out last week, this is war and each side will have an army with amazing strength. 

JE: Those are some heavy hitters getting inducted into Morgaine's ranks.

BE: We have Doctor Light II, Negative Man, Negative Woman, Gentleman Ghost, Brimstone, Prysm, Obsidian, Bolt, Sparx, and the Folded Man. Plus we have the Dreambound: Primat, Swashbuckler, Sun-Chained-in-Ink, and TVM.

JE: Interesting that some of the roles in this world have been reversed, and some of the recruits would have ended up heroes in our world.

BE: Like Negative Man and Negative woman. The Doom Patrol were always outsiders, I imagine they found themselves at odds with JSI's world order.

JE: The JSI isn't without heavy hitters of their own, though.

BE: For the heroes we have Green Lantern I, Starfire, Atom Smasher, Hourman II, Liberty Belle II, Flash I, and Triumph.

JE: The new duds on Flash, Green Lantern and Hawkman are pretty spiffy.

Hawkman returns to the fray

BE: Frankly, while Jay Garrick is not likely to get a new costume, Hawkman would look great in this new set of duds. Green Lantern's costume looks very similar to the one he wore when he was de-aged in the 1990s in "Green Lantern Corps Quarterly" #5 (Summer 1993).

JE: A fantastic time for Alan Scott, and I also recognized the design. I also remember him using a similar look as Sentinel when he joined the Justice League with his daughter, Jade. As a side note, I find it interesting that Hourman and Liberty Belle have been able to maintain their relationship in this world.

BE:  Ah, love. Some things are meant to be.

JE: Brainwave looks to be pulling a Martian Manhunter and coordinates the resistance efforts.

BE:  He's the perfect man for the job. He's a first class telepath and with the sort of training the JSI members get, he is probably very effective.

JE: Likely so, and having everyone on the same page makes for smart battle tactics. Carter Hall's brain trust is not without its genius, but only Luthor seems to be getting the big picture.

BE:  Well, he is Lex Luthor, pretty much the smartest man in any room. Another roll-call!

JE: Look at what we've started.

BE: Who are Hawkman's geniuses? They are Dr. Will Magnus (creator of the Metal Men), Dr. T.O. Morrow (creator of Red Tornado and Tomorrow Woman), Lex Luthor (everyone knows this guy), Dr. Thaddeus Bodog Sivana (Captain Marvel's arch-enemy), and Dr. John Henry Irons (Steel).

JE: That you know Sivana's middle name terrifies me.

BE:  Sir, the man's middle name is Bodog, how can you forget a name like that?

JE: And hey, there's Tomorrow Woman!

BE:  She's playing her role as substitute Superman to the hilt.

JE: She seems to be about as smart as Superman, as well (and that's not meant to be sarcastic). She's tracking down the real problems behind the prison breaks.

BE:  I was thinking her systematic investigation was very in keeping with her nature as an android.

JE: A reasonable conclusion, but then we have our final page. Ouch. That's not going to end well.

Tomorrow Woman suffers a sudden revelation -- she is not human

BE: Tomorrow Woman has been sliced and diced by TVM (who just wanted to send her to the mall.) Why do I have the feeling that no one knew that she was an android, including her?

JE: Perhaps, before this world started to reset itself, she wasn't.

BE: Since we have T.O. Morrow at hand (her creator), we'll find that answer out in short order.

TAGS:  trinity, tringenuity, kurt busiek, mark bagley, dc comics

 
CBR News

Send This Article to a Friend

Separate multiple email address with commas.

You must state your name.

You must enter your email address.