In this prologue issue leading up to Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s ‘DARK NIGHTS: METAL’, the heroes of the DC Universe sense and prepare for an impending danger, with their own Dark Knight at the center of it all.Since the conception of the New 52 and moving onto rebirth, the reconstruction of the character of Batman has been an interesting one to observe in the comics. From his first story arc in his new run in the Court of Owls to the current run now written by Tom King, Batman has had his hands full, with secrets both big and small. In this prelude of ‘Metal’, titled ‘Dark Days’ Snyder moves at an ominous and slow pace with the reveal of some of Batman’s biggest secrets, and a thread that goes all the way back to the Court of Owls in 2012. Written in a non linear format, Dark Days: The Forge goes back in time hundreds of years, into the present, and even showing an unknown future. One interesting common denominator in all of these is Batman. With characters like Green Lantern, Duke Thomas, Aquaman, and Superman all making appearances in this issue, interacting with Batman and his mystery in one way or another. While this may sound crowded, Snyder makes it work.

Although the story seems a bit all over the place at first glance, with Batman journeying all over the place trying to solve this ancient mystery, A lot of what is happening is supposed to be revealed in Metal, so this is just mysterious build up more than anything, with a  surprise reveal at the end that answers a lot of unanswered questions since the beginning of DC Universe: Rebirth. The Art by legendary artists Jim Lee, Andy Kubert, and John Romita Jr. really help this book shine, and with all the craziness going on in this issue, they manage to give it some depth and give readers a sense of what is going on, as well as changing artists every few pages to help show when a transition in the story is happening.

The main driving point of this issue from Snyder and Co. is the possible consequences this journey and event may have on Batman, and how it can possibly change the way he is and operates, with possible glimpses of the future shown in this comic. Those sequences in this comic alone are enough to entice you to pick up METAL #1 when it hits stores this August.

In the end, despite having a fantastic writing team behind it as well as talented artists, Dark Days: The Forge suffers from being a bit of an overcrowded issue and throwing too many things at once at the reader. The story to be told in the upcoming METAL is still promising enough though, thanks to the story that they manage to tell in this issue as well as its shocking closing pages.

GRADE: 8/10

Dark Days: The Forge #1 is in stores now, with the new DC Comic event Dark Nights: Metal #1 hitting stores this August


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