Issue 3 Synopsis

Midnight Nation 3

Review by Mike Helba

Midnight Nation is a 12-issue comic book series written by J. Michael Straczynski and published by Top Cow under the Joe's Comics imprint.

In Issue 3 of Midnight Nation, Detective David Grey and his guide, Laurel, set off across the country to search for David's stolen soul.

The allegory is obvious, and in this issue David takes his first step towards promoting humanity by making an important choice. The path David takes is possibly not the most logical one, and it is definitely not the easiest one, but it is the right one.

It's easy to be a cynic. It's even easier to be afraid. But sometimes we just have to do the right thing.

The scope of Midnight Nation is so much more personal than J. Michael Straczynski's various epic works, but that actually serves to make the conflict even more intense. While the inhabitants of Babylon 5 fight for their corner of the galaxy and the Specials of Rising Stars fight for their few decades in the history books, David Grey fights for his whole world. For David, everything is at stake.

With the high stakes in this intensely personal story, I predict that the ending may also be more fulfilling than Straczynski's other works.

However, we are still far from the end. This month, David learns more about Laz. Some readers may take issue with Straczynski's portrayal of this character. While Straczynski may have taken some liberties with Laz, his use throughout Midnight Nation of several elements from Laz's source material shows the high degree of respect and open-mindedness that we've come to expect from Straczynski.

As usual, Gary Frank's artwork is superb and filled with bonuses. During Laz's story, the panels begin ragged and become progressively cleaner as his recount approaches the present day. Another neat feature is that the marquee and poster at the drive-in advertise a Rising Stars movie.

The artwork also highlights a question about Laurel's origin. The Walkers wear the same expression on their faces when they see Laurel as when they see Laz's companion. Could the Walkers fear Laurel for the same reason that they fear Laz's companion?

This month's issue includes a letters column. Unfortunately, there are no Midnight Nation art previews this month.

Midnight Nation is shaping up to be one of Straczynski's most well written and meaningful projects yet. He is definitely making a positive impact on the comics industry.

The synopsis provides a detailed summary of Issue 3. It contains spoilers.