|“Trinity” #33 on sale now|
“I know, they seem like a … nice… family.” – Enigma
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.
As the Companions, the Harbor Folk and the Patterned Men continued on their pilgrimage, the story of Atmahn concluded with the death of Rabbat and the Judgelord’s turn from justice to revenge. The groupalso encountered the Hosts of War, aliens that worshiped Ares instead of the Trinity. The War Host was routed and the pilgrims joined the Feather-Folk as all the tribes grew closer to their destination. The story of Dinanna was related, terminating when Lois Lane produced a tape recorder in violation of the aliens’ law against machines.
Following Morgaine’s villains, Tomorrow Woman, Triumph and Black Adam discussed what a new world might bring them. While all three hoped for a brighter tomorrow, both Triumph and Tomorrow Woman separately learned that in the restored reality that Carter Hall is fighting for, neither of them will be alive. Despite the personal conflict, the heroes returned to the fight, willing to make the world a better place, even if it didn’t include them.
The lead feature continues where it left off, with Lois confronted with the charge of heresy as a machine user. For this crime, the Companions are banished — despite the protests of the Harbor Folk. As the heroes try and make their way without guidance, they are approached by an alien child that tells them the story of the machinists and that their rejection of Kellel and the Trinity is what makes them heretics. The child also concludes the tale of the Gray Lord before returning to his people. After hearing the stories of Batman and Wonder Woman. Donna Troy and Dick Grayson recover much of their memories as well as their skills and powers. Finally, Interceptor hears the story of Kellel, while corrupt machinists lie in wait to ambush the pilgrims.
Meanwhile, the heroes of the Justice Arcana lose another round to Morgaine Le Fey, as she and her powerful villains take control of Tel Aviv, leaving chaos in their wake while they make ready to lay siege to Egypt. But the changes wrought by Morgaine’s magic take on a much more personal tone when Enigma watches one solitary family succumb to the ravages of chaos. Looking on from afar, Enigma is forced to watch a man murder his own daughter while she transforms into a monster, only to transform himself not long after – a horrible chain of events he helped put in motion. Consequently, Enimga begins to question his alliance with Le Fey.
Brian Eason: The Companions are banished from among the pilgrims for their heretical use of machines.
Justin Eger: I imagine this was somehow tied to stories of the Grey Lord (Max Lord) and his use of machines (in our world, the OMACs).
BE: Fortunately, a child of the Harbor Folk who has learned the truth of Dinanna finishes the story of the Gray Lord.
JE: And Dinanna’s turn from the path of peace to the way of the warrior.
BE:Â As she battles Kellel and kills the Gray Lord.
JE: And it’s not even a death in battle that twists her beliefs. Dinanna kills a captured opponent. Not without good reason, but that’s not the way she’s taught others.
BE: Each story precedes a fall. I imagine we have three more tales in store, those of redemption and resurrection. Do those machinist uniforms look familiar?
|The machinists the aliens fear so much|
JE: Absolutely. They appear to be near duplicates of Lex Luthor’s battlesuit. Very cool.
BE: No wonder they hate Kellel. Seems we were right about the Gray Lord’s identity.
JE: Indeed. The companions (specifically Nemesis and Donna) get some memories back in a rush as they remember Wonder Woman’s murder of Max Lord.
|Donna and Nemesis remember the death of Max Lord|
BE: Donna and Dick have their skills back and much of their memories.
|Remembering better times|
JE: That was a nice scene. It felt very relaxed and comfortable, more lighthearted than we’ve seen these characters in a while — either here or in any other book.
BE: Mark Bagley channeled Marv Wolfman and George Perez’s “Teen Titans” here.
JE: Just what I was thinking. That playfulness between Donna and Dick, it’s a sign of their longtime friendship coming back to the surface.
BE:Â Isn’t this just a couple you wish would get together?
JE: Man, here I was thinking I was the only one. Of course I wish they would get together.
BE: But Interceptor is … how shall I put it? Testy.
JE: I have to wonder if it’s the military upbringing or the need to get to the heart of her own real life.
BE: It’s a Kryptonian thing.
JE: If you say so.
BE: Seriously. Without the influence of Ma and Pa Kent you get what? Eradicator. General Zod. Evil Supergirl. Crazy Zor-El. Kryptonians have a history of this.
JE: You make a convincing argument, I’ll give you that.
BE: And as Interceptor goes to hear Superman’s story, the machinists plan something unhealthy for the pilgrims.
JE: It looks like an ambush is in the works.
BE: What are the chances that this group worships Luthor?
JE: Man, that’s some solid thinking there. Odds must be good.
BE: With Areez and The Laughing Chaos, Luthor had to be in here somewhere.Â
JE: No doubt. Like Ares and The Joker, Lex Luthor completes the villainous trifecta that stands opposite the Trinity. Last week, we saw the heroes win some territory. This week, Morgaine and company snag some turf of their own.
BE: The nature of the world changes to match the nature of Morgaine as they take regions.
JE: It seems that while peace reigns where the heroes take control, Morgaine’s dominance leads to chaos.
BE: Peace, or Order. The question is, is it Carter Hall’s model that is dominant here, or the Trinity’s?
JE: Since we don’t have a Trinity, I’m leaning towards the Carter Hall angle. At the very least, those principalities are reminiscent of Prince Khufu’s reign in ancient Egypt.
BE: Agreed. I think this may have less to do with the Troika and the Trinity and more to do with how the arcana act as agents of change. The map keeps changing in this battle; first Tel Aviv and now on to Egypt.
JE: It truly is a conflict of global proportions.
BE: If they had more time to get into it, this would feel like those old Cary Bates JLAs where the three-man teams would go do missions.
JE: It certainly would. Strike teams attacking different angles of the problem after getting their marching orders, using the classic Justice League strategy.
BE: With their logos heading up each chapter.Â
JE: There’s an image I can get behind. What terrifies me, though, are how the people under Morgaine’s rule are changed.
BE: Those are startling transformations. The people of Tel Aviv are becoming creatures of myth.
JE: And much to Enigma’s chagrin.
BE: Yes, it conflicts with his ideas of peace and justice. SPHERE’s personality does match that of Enigma’s daughter, and he is hero on Anti-Earth. But remember that the heroes of Anti-Earth have had to learn to be as vicious as the criminals.
|A conflicted Enigma watches from afar|
JE: But he seems very, very conflicted about the path he has to take. Even when Morgaine confronts him, he rejects this idea of chaos.
BE: It’s not his nature. His nature is, ultimately, peace.
JE: For his world, for himself. Peace is the way to go, but his choice of allies is a poor one if that’s his goal.
BE: Yes, but Morgaine traps Enigma in his own logic. She is reshaping Earth against its nature, just as Enigma would do with Anti-Earth.
JE: But despite the difference, I have to wonder if Enigma really wants change on such a grand scale. He might just want his family back.
BE: But what does Konvikt want?
JE: That’s a good question. We haven’t seen much of him since his transformation.
BE: I think Morgaine is the only real villain of these three.
JE: Which will be her ultimate downfall. I’ll put money on that one right now.
BE: What a stark and disturbing vision of the world as the man chooses to kill his daughter as she is transformed into a gorgon.
|An impossible choice|
JE: And then, not long after he makes that horrible decision, the worst happens.
BE: Even more tragic is the fact that the father then begins to succumb to the same sort of transformation.
JE: Which closes out this chapter. That’s some pretty disturbing stuff, there.