Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Dr. Fate 4 Part Mini Series (Review)

Keeping in line with my last post, I will continue on with the 80's theme.  Sorry, but being a kid that grew up in that era, I can't help and reminisce about the good old days.  Today I review DeMatteis' four part Dr. Fate mini-series that came out in the late 80's.  It was this mini-series that spawned a solo Dr. Fate series that ran for approximately two years (if I remember correctly).  If you've read my previous review of the first part of that solo run (read the review here) you know that I wasn't a big fan of that series.  However, this four part mini-series was different.   I really enjoyed this story.  It marks the first time in Dr. Fate's history where the Helm is passed on to another host. 

In this post-Crisis story, Kent Nelson has grown old, Inza has passed and Chaos is ready to take over the world.  The Lords of Order, sensing a shift have given up in order to let Chaos reign and bring on a new age of enlightenment.  However, Nabu refuses to lay down and let Chaos win so he seeks a new champion in the form of another young boy named Eric.  Eric is aged much like Nelson was and thrown into battle without much training.  He gets swept up by Chaos and lands in Arkham Asylum. Nelson exposes Nabu as a liar and manipulator and figures out that Dr. Fate was never meant to be just one person but a combination of male and female energy.  In the end Eric and his step-mother, Linda join together to become Dr. Fate and defeat the Lord of Chaos (who by the way is Nabu's twin brother).  Kent Nelson passes at the end while Nabu is ousted as a Lord of Order and now resides in Kent Nelson's body as a guide for both Eric and Linda.  

I really loved this series, because in it DeMatteis takes Dr. Fate seriously and the story has a very dark ring to it.  The artwork by Giffen is different, but really works with the dark feel of the story.  I feel like this is a much different story than the spin off solo series Dr. Fate received.  Although, I hate that Nabu is such an A-hole in the story, the internal conflict between him and Kent is very powerful.  And, I actually shed a tear when I read Kent Nelsons tombstone "No man gave more."  This is an excellent Dr. Fate story.  I wish DC would put it out as a paperback trade.  If you get a chance to pick up the comics at your local comic shop, or maybe on e-bay, I highly recommend them.           


  1. One of my all-time favorite reads. If I have sunday were I have nothing to do, I find myself always dig these four books out, so much so that I bought an extra set just for read and one for my collection.

    I also could not agree more that this four issue story is far better than the series that followed. While that series had its moments, it just never lived up to the dark, almost unfair struggle in the mini series.

    I know some would not agree but Keith was perfect for these books, I mean come on ..Kent with a mouth on his stomach...who better to pencil that up.

  2. Totally agree. I loved Giffen's art in this series. The way he shaded the helm so most of the time it was shadowy, made Dr. Fate look that much more mysterious. Excellent books all around.