Home > Christmas, DC Comics > DCU Infinite Holiday Special #1

DCU Infinite Holiday Special #1

December 16, 2006

Quick Rating: Very Good
Title: A Hector Hammond Christmas and other stories

Christmas in a Post-Crisis DC Universe!

Writers: Keith Champagne, Bill Willingham, Joe Kelly, Tony Bedard, Ian Boothby, Greg Rucka, Kelly Puckett
Pencils: John Byrne, Cory Walker, Ale Garza, Marcos Marz, Giuseppe Camuncoli, Christian Alamy, Pete Woods
Inks: Keith Champagne, Luciana Del Negro, Lorenzo Ruggiero
Colors: Nathan Eyring, Mike Atiyeh, J.J. Kirby, Rod Reis, Hi-Fi Design, Jason Wright, Brad Anderson
Letters: Travis Lanham, John Hill, Jared K. Fletcher, Phil Balsman
Editors: Peter Tomasi, Joey Cavalieri, Eddie Berganza, Mike Carlin, Joan Hilty
Cover Art: Howard Porter
Publisher: DC Comics

A few months ago, DC solicited this special as Infinite Christmas, showcasing several DC heroes in this new world that’s been built up. When it hit the stands on Wednesday, though, the title had mysteriously changed to Infinite Holiday. This is really unfortunate, and for two reasons. First, Infinite Christmas was a great play on words. Infinite Holiday makes no sense at all. Second, with the last-second, unannounced title change after being promoted for so long, it gives the book the air that someone whined and someone else buckled.

But on to the actual stories. We’ve got seven tales of the DC Universe, and they’re all pretty good. Keith Champagne and John Byrne kick things off with Green Lantern “A Hector Hammond Christmas.” Hal Jordan is summoned to the imprisoned telepath Hector Hammond, only to find that Hammond is out to try to steal some of Jordan’s memories again. Although the sordid little man usually plucks out Hal’s more intimate encounters, this time his agenda is different – he just wants a taste of the Christmases Hal enjoyed with his father. It’s a surprisingly sweet tale and it works very, very well.

Bill Willingham and Cory Woods showcase the Shadowpact in “Christmas Spirits.” As the members of Shadowpact enjoy Christmas at the Oblivion, a not-so-jolly figure in red appears. It’s Santa Claus, and he’s become the target for Anti-Christmas terrorists. Willingham has an absolutely hysterical twist in this story, the sort of thing you’re almost surprised he could get away with, but it’s such a great little left turn that anything else would have made the story seem rather trite.

In “All I Want For Christmas” by Joe Kelly and Ale Garza, Superman invites Supergirl to join him in his annual tradition of reading mail from people asking for his help. Supergirl finds a young girl who wants nothing more than to spend Christmas with her father, stationed in Iraq, and the girl of steel sets out to help. Even at Christmas, though, things aren’t always what they seem.

“Gift of the Magi” is the Trials of Shazam! tie-in. Tony Bedard features two of the gods that are testing Freddie Freeman as, at Christmas, they discuss his worthiness to take on the power of Shazam. The story is a nice little sidebar to the main storyline, and Marcos Marz, Luciano Del Negro and Rod Reis do a very good job of imitating the digitally painted style that Howard Porter has brought to the comic. “Father Christmas” by Ian Boothby and Giuseppe Camuncoli stars the Flash. As Bart Allen still tries to come to grips with taking on his grandfather’s mantle, Los Angeles is buried under a freak snowfall. Someone’s using the tricks of an old Flash foe, but the reasonings behind it may not be what you expect.

The new Batwoman stars in “Lights” by Greg Rucka and Christian Alamy. On Hanukkah, Kate Kane busts up a ring of Santa thieves who have a very special treasure in their possession. Honestly, this story really fell flat for me. The story relies very heavily on Kate’s relationships with two characters that we haven’t really met at all prior to this story. Batwoman herself is still a developing character – this story doesn’t work until we know more about her world and the characters she’s interacting with.

The special wraps up with Kelley Puckett and Pete Woods’s “Yes, Tyrone, There is a Santa Claus.” When a young boy writes a letter to the Daily Planet asking if there’s really a Santa Claus, Clark Kent decides to take matters into his own hands – until a friend advises him to rethink things. This is a really funny story, leading up to a hysterical final page that puts everything into the proper context.

Overall, this is a really good special, with each story (expect for the last one) shedding nice light on characters who have undergone major changes in the past year or two. As such, it’s a strong sampler of the DC Universe as a whole, and a good little dose of Christmas cheer.

Rating: 8/10

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  1. December 22, 2016 at 2:35 pm

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