I’ll never be one to want a creative team to rush into selling me on a new hero, but this right here has been an absolute treat. For where we are at now in the story of Naomi, you couldn’t be more impressed by the efforts of Bendis, Walker and Campbell as they set to fully establish yet another young hero with potential in the realm of superheroes. It never hurts to have some pep in your step, to be quick knowing that any issue could be the last before all is revealed.
As I said last month, Naomi #4 proved to us that this creative team is not messing around with this mystery. They aren’t dragging us along with twists and turns, and they aren’t trying to milk out a feeling of suspense. This experience has been worthwhile when each passing issue so far has revealed something major, leading up to the big discovery this month with Naomi #5. My head was almost about to explode when I say that glow from the box in her hand. A symbol I personally never saw before, and a gleam in Naomi’s eye which told us that something big was just unlocked. Since the debut issue, this was the first time where I was truly aching for that next issue to come out.
Naomi #5 was as impressive as it gets because not a single page was wasted in giving us the truth behind Naomi’s origin. From start to finish this story jumped right into the finer details that we needed to understand. This of course began with understanding her parents, the circumstances which gave them their powers, and where in the multiverse they resided. Their story was well-crafted and it worked very well for one that would challenge everything you might question about why they are gone and Naomi is here. Even the big bad established in this story was solid for the fact that there was clear motivation given for Naomi to be taken from that world and kept secret till she was absolutely ready for the truth.
Anyone could complain that maybe it got a bit wordy, but honestly when accompanied by such gorgeous artwork? Is that even valid when you have just as much time to take in renderings which genuinely immerse you into the world where her parents came from?
It was reaction once more from Naomi which brought it all together because to be frank the only thing that can kill a young hero story is the young hero. Up to this point I have admired the way that she has been written as this kid who doesn’t act like the cliche. She enjoys the same things that we did at that age, but without all of the over the top drama and need to give attention to trivial needs. Maybe because she has a priority, or maybe because she surrounds herself with the right people, but this is someone you could enjoy for all the right reasons as you would have with Miles Morales or Kamala Kahn.
Sometimes I think about how to explain the artwork for this series, and not enough words can do that justice. I don’t think I have ever flipped open a young hero book to be this impressed by the work put into both the covers and the interiors. I mean, the cover for this issue in particular? Blew me away because we knew exactly what we were in store for seeing Naomi powered-up and in full uniform. Personally I loved the design given to her and her people. It was like nothing else that you have seen in the DC Universe, and created this presence that they are just possibly god-like. If the designs weren’t enough to create that thought, then it was definitely the power of the white auras used to capture the glow of these people. It was as if someone asked them how much white do we want to use to give Naomi’s powers flare, only to get the answer “Yes”. Beyond this, stunning work once more when it came to the story unfolded and the way these double-page spreads have been used to capture so much in a single space.
Even the lettering from Wes Abbott was standout in this issue for the distinct voice that he was able to give to Naomi’s mother. Excellent choice as well in placement for some of the lettering on the pages where there was a lot about the interiors as a whole to admire without thinking that something was being blocked.
Was the secret to the origins of Naomi worth all of the hype put into it? Hell yes! Naomi #5 was everything you could have asked for and more. This is what readers want when they look forward to a new hero who is supposed to be able to carve our their own corner of the world.