The following will be an amalgam of reviewing and analyzing. I go both ways baby! Ugh I just threw what little credibility I had out the window. Before beginning I’d like to thank Grant Morrison for creating an event that is so astounding, astonishing, fantastic, and just about every other positive adjective you can think of. In addition to being top notch entertainment, it requires several readings and deep analyzing. This isn’t because it’s confusing or overly convoluted, but because it’s something you want to do. At least that’s how I feel about it. Thanks Grant.
In the opening three pages, Frankenstein(YAY!) busts into the Darkseid club with his crew and it’s finally spoon-fed to people that indeed Darkseid left that body he inhabited in the first issue. Also, the title of this issue and our future are spelled out to us, “KNOW EVIL”.
Something falls out of the sky and it is a German speaking female. What’s interesting is the symbol on her chest is the same one the lost Monitor was drawing last issue. Speaking of the lost Monitor, he gets fired from his job on the next page and after the Monitor leaves his boss says “madness”. I guess this is just the anti-life equation already starting to creep up. Morrison himself said that people in general are acting unusually angry. Oh and that drawing that Anthro (cave man dude) painted in the first issue is found.
We next have Jay Garrick talking about that whole race against death (Black Racer) that we saw the beginning of last issue. I thought it was a particularly touching moment to see the three generations of Flash running together. This is really the future of Flash I think. It’s been recently announced that Geoff Johns will be writing Flash Rebirth in the beginning of next year. That series will be about Barry Allen which led many people to ask “Is Wally going to die then?” But I don’t think that will happen. Flash is one of those few characters where you can have a family of them running around and it works. So that’s why that moment struck me as brilliant. Sadly, they couldn’t quite catch the time bullet in time to save Orion. What happened to the other Flashes? Stay tuned!
Oh we next see the old swamp Legion of Doom headquarters. I don’t know why Libra and the Human Flame are there, but I’m happy to see it! Libra then puts a helmet on Human Flame’s head that releases the anti-life equation! See, I think a lot of the naysayers who disliked the first two issues will enjoy this a lot more. There is much less analyzing involved and more good old-fashioned storytelling. There are lots of cool moments in here like the one where Human Flame pays his price.
Next we get a glimpse of a Clark Kent we don’t often see. He’s dealing with Lois being injured and as Billy pointed out, he’s acting pretty selfish for Superman. There’s a moment I like where Clark mentions he’s keeping Lois’ heart beating with his heat vision. It’s just one of those cool little details. A mysterious figure, which looks like one of the Monitors from the first issue, enters the room and says “I offer you one ultimate chance to save her!” Oh no it’s Mephisto! Ugh I suddenly feel so dirty. Damn Joey Q!
I like the page where we see the heroes assembling. We get to see a nice Supergirl moment where she pets Streaky the Supercat. Oh yeah the Super-Pets are back! Hey bringing stupid concepts from the silver age and making them cool is what Morrison is good at. Mister Tawky Tawny gets his jet pack. Remember, Kalibak’s new body is some sort of tiger too. Will there be a tiger fight? Green Arrow and Black Canary share a humorous moment where Ollie says “If anybody falls for this authoritarian, militaristic crap, it’ll prove I’m absolutely right about absolutely everything!”
Next we get a whole page filled with superheroes. I haven’t mentioned Jones’ art yet but he’s doing a hell of a job. He really seems to show his stuff when he’s drawing lots of details and characters. Seventhsoldier mentioned that the art seemed a bit off or that there is a bad colorist. The colorist is Alex Sinclair who does fantastic work with Jim Lee and though this isn’t his best work, it still seems pretty good to me. Anyway, I loved looking at this page and seeing who was in it. I like to see if I can name them all and fortunately I knew most of them. What was intriguing was that both Nightwing and Robin were present. If you’ve been following Batman RIP and Final Crisis, you might remember that Morrison has been fairly secretive about Batman in Final Crisis. He’s never been referred to as Bruce (except in that crappy Requiem issue) nor has Nightwing or Robin appeared until now. So if I were to speculate about RIP, I guess Bruce is still Batman, or Jason Todd is Batman, or Jason Todd is Nightwing (He has been before in those horrendous Nightwing issues) and Dick Grayson is Batman. What do you all think?
Of course the action sequence with Mister Miracle (Seven Soldiers style), Sonny Sumo and the Super Young Team versus those anti-life goons (notice the helmets, oh and do they look a little BSG to you?) was awesome!
We get some more action involving Wonder Woman, the Atomic Knights (nod to Seventhsoldier for knowing who the hell these guys were), and one hell of a crazy Mary Marvel! She is given that Morrison twisted evil look. There was a bit of humorous dialogue in here where Mary Marvel says “In the end I just couldn’t stand being wholesome and plain and boring one second longer”. It’s funny because it’s true.
Of course the bomb drops in this issue. The anti-life equation is spread to everyone through email. Yes, this truly is the computer age. I love that the world ends because of spam! What’s better than some humor with your evil?
Oh and were you wondering where Barry and Flash went? They went to the future of course. Oh there is some more humor when Barry asks “Why did I have to come back?” which is something I’m sure more than one comic fan is asking right now. And of course this leads to the awesome reveal of the tainted superheroes. It looks like Wonder Woman, Batwoman, Catwoman, and I wasn’t sure who the other one was but Wikipedia says Elasti-Girl.
This turned out to be much more analyzing than I thought but hey we give our thoughts freedom here. Hopefully all my blabbing wasn’t totally boring. Please let me know what you guys think of what I talked about and of course if I got something wrong or missed something. I still love this comic so much. I’ll admit that Secret Invasion is definitely more accessible, but please people at least buy the trade. You won’t regret it.