By Jonathan Edwards
I remember having some particular interest in Trinity when I was first looking over DC's new releases that would be launching with Rebirth. I couldn't tell you exactly why, though the promise of a book focusing specifically on the dynamics between Wonder Woman, Superman, and Batman intrigued me. I now know there had previously been an ongoing weekly book with the same name and conceit, but at the time, I was easily hooked by a novelty I somehow hadn't really ever considered. I read the first six issues before stopping, mainly because I'd managed to fall behind in my reading after around Trinity #3. I didn't really want to play that much catch-up, so I opted to just finish up the first story arc and leave it at that. I enjoyed the book enough (I even briefly considered reversing my earlier decision and checking my LCS for back issues), but ultimately I decided that treating those first six issues like something of a limited series was enough for me. And then, this annual cropped up. After some slight deliberation, I decided I might as well let it be the final say in whether or not I picked up the main book again.
To be frank, no, this annual didn't make me change my mind. It's not bad, but it fails to take the Big Three's relationship anywhere interesting. As such, the primary conflict involving Etrigan ends up feeling more pedestrian than anything else, while all of the "dark trinity" (or whatever you want to call them) stuff spends its time hinting at some future plotline (one that might crossover with Red Hood and the Outlaws). In context, those stories works fine. It just doesn't seem like the type of thing that would merit it being an annual versus, say, a one-shot in the main book. Granted, the Superman Annual #1 from a few months back was similarly average, but at least that one touched upon the greater significance of the original Superman existing in the current DCU.
All that being said, Trinity Annual #1 does have a handful of standout moments. In particular, the descriptions of Clark and Diana that Bruce gives to Jason Blood are wonderfully concise and effective. If the entire issue had been at that level conceptually, I'm sure everything would've landed much stronger. Furthermore, the final page does offer a fairly solid reason to at least keep Trinity on the radar for the time being, even if, like me, you think it's not quite worth picking up at the moment.
For the most part, the art's pretty good. However, there are several moments throughout that made me stop for a second and question if what I was seeing looked right. It mostly had to do with character poses, and I'd say probably half the time the answer to that question was "no, it's at least a little off." Nothing too drastic comes to mind, but it happened enough that I was consistently distracted and pulled out of the story.
At the end of the day, this book is going to do little more than reinforce how you feel about the series. If you've been into it so far, you'll probably dig this one. If you dropped it, I don't think this is going to make you pick it back up. And if you never started but are interested, maybe skip this one. Either grab the first trade, find a copy of Trinity #9 from a couple weeks ago, or wait until the start of the next story arc instead.
Trinity Annual #1