When DC Comics' announced its upcoming Dark Matter publishing initiative, it did so with a heavy emphasis on the various series' artists, though little was shown aside from some concept art from the various titles.
Now, Tony S. Daniel, who will be illustrating Dark Matter's Damage, shared the finished cover to his debut issue on Twitter, and teased more to come. "First reveal of the full colored cover for #Damage #1," Daniel tweeted. "There are 2 more pieces to this cover."
The cover offers our first good look at Damage, a name that once belonged to a DC legacy hero named Grant Emerson. First appearing in Damage #1 in 1994, Emerson was the son of the son of Al Pratt, the original Atom, and was a member of the Titans, Freedom Fighters, and the Justice Society of America. His powers consisted of harnessing energy to increase his natural abilities to a superhuman level. However, if he doesn't use the channeled energy within a certain amount of time, Emerson is forced to discharge it. He played a major factor in the 1994 event Zero Hour, where he created a Big Bang by releasing his powers, thereby jump-starting the universe after it was destroyed by the Green Lantern villain Parallax.
This Damage goes by the name Ethan Avery, a military recruit who is granted the ability to turn into an unstoppable monster for one hour at a time. Whereas the physical appearance of the Emerson version of Damage stayed the same, it's clear from the cover that Avery will undergo a transformation when he turns into the oversized gray weapon of destruction.
“‘Dark Matter’ is a return to bringing both the writer and artist to the fore to unlock their full potential,” Co-Publisher (and Immortal Men artist) Jim Lee said in a press release. “At the talent summit we discussed what was missing in comics and how we could create something that’s new for this generation of fans. The result was ‘Dark Matter.’ You’ll see bombastic action scenes and a visual narrative driven by the artist. This approach has energized the creators involved, myself included, and we’re going to have a lot of fun with these books.”
Damage #1, from writer Robert Venditti and artist Tony S. Daniel, arrives in stores in October.