|“Trinity” #32 on sale now|
“She was Dinanna, Guardian of Truth, Lady of Bounty and Teacher to All.” – Shevri the Storyteller
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.
The struggle to maintain reality began when the Dark Arcana and the Justice Arcana battled for territory, with the villains taking London and our heroes claiming Rio de Janeiro. As the lead feature concluded, the Troika recruited Lord Kyber as the Emperor for the Dark Arcana, and Carter Hall finally finished assembling his team to form the Justice Arcana.
Meanwhile, Alfred Pennyworth, Lois Lane, Richie Grayson, Donna Troy, Nemesis and Interceptor continued their travels with the people of the alternate reality, who shared more history, beginning first with the departure of the goodly gods Kellel, Dinanna and Atmahn, the latter of whom still keeps watch over his people, and sent a young orphan-turned-hero named Rabbat to fight in his stead, only to see the young warrior killed in action.
The lead feature returns to the Trinity’s companions as they continue with the Harbor Folk and Patterned Men on their pilgrimage. The story of Atmahn concludes with the death of Rabbat and the Dark Knight’s turn from Justice to Vengeance. Along the way, the Pilgrims encounter the Hosts of War, a group of aliens that worship Ares and deny the religion of the Trinity. As the War Host flees before the companions, the Pilgrims encounter another tribe, the Feather-Folk, who relate the tale of Dinanna. In their legend, Wonder Woman and Superman face a mind controlling force of evil called the Grey Lord. Before the story could be fully told, Lois Lane removed a tape recorder from her bag and the companions were branded heretics for wielding machines!
Meanwhile, back on the altered Earth, the members of the JSI’s Justice Arcana continue the fight against Morgaine Le Fey’s villainous teammates. Battling in Tunisia, the heroes claim the city for the good guys. However, in the aftermath, Black Adam, Tomorrow Woman and Triumph all consider the possibility that the world they are fighting to restore, the world of Firestorm’s memories, could be better for everyone. Unfortunately, both Tomorrow Woman and Triumph have learned their own destinies would end with such a restoration, as both are dead in Firestorm’s world.
Brian Eason: We return to the trek this week as the companions and the pilgrims encounter the Host of War; people of this world who don’t following the teachings of our Trinity, who are the new gods of this world. They follow the enemy. Areez. I like that.
Justin Eger: That was a nice touch, referencing Ares, Wonder Woman’s nemesis. And good for Lois for catching on to the translations so quickly.
BE:Â Understanding is what she does. I think it’s what has always made her more than just Superman’s wife. The Feather-Folk don’t seem to be as friendly to outsiders.
JE: No, they seem very insular, even after Alfred and company help with the medical needs of the wounded.
BE: These people all seem to just be geographically divided: coast, plains, mountains. I keep thinking there must be more to it than that.
JE: Is it possible that each tribe focuses more on one particular aspect of the Trinity? The coast people are more warm and open, like Dinanna, while the Feather Folk are more standoffish and insular, perhaps like Atmahn.
BE: I was thinking the same, but there is not enough evidence yet. I was also wondering if it was some tie to the League. They are so close to the original headquarters.Â It could be a matter of translating Aquaman for the Coastal people and Hawkman for the Feathered-Folk.
JE: There’s a good thought. That would possibly provide a host of tribes. Very good thinking.
BE: After the death of Rabbat, Atmahn becomes dark and reclusive. I think I am seeing something here.
|Atmahn the Night Judge changes his tune|
JE: Would you be feeling “A Lonely Place of Dying,” which tracked Batman’s downward spiral following Jason Todd’s death?
BE: It would. But before the story continues we move to the tale of Dinanna. I love that Dinanna is shown with children frolicking at her feet.
JE: It’s a beautiful image, and kudos to Mark Bagley for that one. But I have to say, at Dinanna’s size, those “children” could be full blown adults.
|The Lady of Truth|
BE: She is epically huge.Â
JE: But not as threatening as you might expect such a large being to be. Your use of the word “frolic” was very apt.
BE: And she appears to have taught the way of the Amazons to the people.
JE: Make ready for war so you can better prepare for peace?
BE: Exactly. Another part of the “American Way” perhaps?
JE: It’s not unheard of that our fair country practices such politics. Teddy Roosevelt’s “Walk Softly and carry a big stick” quote comes to mind.
|Kellel goes mad, and so do the Feather Folk|
BE: Grey Lord. He controls minds. Max Lord?
JE: Bingo. It took me a few pages to figure him out, but there was that one key image that clued me in to his identity.
BE: Please share.
JE: The mental overpowering of Kellel or, as we know him, Superman. Now it’s your turn: what storyline is that referencing?
BE: “Superman” #219 and “Action Comics” #829, which lead to Wonder Woman killing Max in “Wonder Woman” #219.
JE: “Sacrifice” was a fantastic storyline.
BE: Machines are heresy.
JE: Considering the dealings these people had with their Firstgod and his science, it’s no wonder. Smooth move, there , Lois.
BE: This is the Lois Lane that I know and love. The one that always gets into trouble.Â
JE: But there is no Big Blue Boy Scout to rescue her in this world. Shifting back to the current reality, the JSI have made some headway against Morgaine’s forces.
BE: Tunisia is now in the win column for the heroes.
JE: Black Adam, Tomorrow Woman and Triumph.
BE: That’s a team-up I never thought I’d see.
JE: Nor I. It’s certainly a front-loaded group.
BE:Â I can’t think of too many bigger powerhouses in this world.
JE: And though Booster Gold is a part of the force, we don’t see him much after the fight.
BE: No, and Booster as the Devil? Representing “pleasure and abandon, of wild behavior and unbridled desires.” I guess I can see that.
JE: I sense your consternation, and imagine it was similar to the same feelings I had during that reference. I would have considered Booster to be The Fool before anything else, but maybe that was just too easy.
BE: That would fit as well, a person in search of experience. But I think in this world we are more than likely looking at Booster as the get-rich-quick guy since there was no Justice League International.Â
JE: More than likely, and probably the bane of his teammates existences in the process. Tommie and Triumph have a heart to heart with Black Adam.
BE:Â Adam remains the classic anti-hero here. He wants a better world, one with his family alive, and will do whatever ruthless thing he has to do to get it.
JE: Even if it means hanging out with a group of heroes he’d rather be slugging it out with.
BE: He’s just an angry man.
JE: Looks like Black Adam is going to be disappointed in the new (old) world.
BE: It seems his fate to suffer. I think that’s all that prevents him from being a full blown villain.
JE: A sense of empathy on our parts?
BE: How can you not love Black Adam. Geoff Johns broke him out of his two-dimensional villain shell and made him a very sympathetic anti-hero.
JE: Precisely as he did with one of our regular points of discussion, Hawkman. And yet, both Tomorrow Woman and Triumph know the truth, at least about themselves.
BE: This was very poignant. It defines their heroism, considering that they are fighting to bring back a world where they are dead.
|What about the “real” world?|
JE: All in the hopes that it might turn out better for someone else, even if that person happens to be Black Adam. Amazing. That’s a hard reality to be facing, I would think.
BE: I can’t begin to imagine, but it’s well delivered here. Truly heroic.
JE: It’s striking, and for me, it did one other thing: It made me question if I’d be capable of doing something similar.
BE: And that sort of heroism is exactly what Kurt Busiek and Fabian Nicieza do so well, time after time. They take these “out-dated” ideas of what it is to be noble and just make them so poignant. Brilliant stuff.
|The truest definition of heroism|