Animal Man 18 brings both the end of the Rotworld storyline and a tragedy into the main character’s life. It’s been a relatively good storyline, with some awesome moments here and there, but some of the middle issues lagged a bit. The army of Frankenstein soldiers was awesome at first, but they didn’t really add much to the storytelling. The plant-like green lantern was kind of meh. This issue made the whole story worth it though.
Buddy Baker (Animal Man) is sent back to the present to have one last chance to prevent Rotworld from happening. What follows is the conclusion to the flashbacks throughout the Rotworld arc. It’s an emotionally charged confrontation between Animal Man (and his daughter, the avatar of “the red”), arcane, and the rot hunters.
The battle isn’t without its consequences for the title character though. In a lot of ways, the consequences here feel deeper than they did in Batman Incorporated 8 last week. While I liked that issue at first, thinking back, it almost feels like a marketing ploy (especially since they spoiled it ahead of time). This on the other hand was unexpected, especially with some of the dialogue between Buddy’s family members after the fight. That makes it all the more tragic, and better as a result.
This definitely isn’t a good starting issue for this series. It’s the end of a fairly complicated storyline that started with issue 13. It’s well worth reading though. Animal Man is a rare breed in the comic world; it’s a horror series about a family man who was gifted with animal-based superpowers. The series is often delightfully weird, and the characters are relatable.