Pity the poor casual reader who picks up Final Crisis 1. As confusing as it is to enter a shared universe of costumed heroes and villains, coming into a big company crossover must be even harder.
Writer Grant Morrision (Invisibles, Seven Soldiers, everything else ever) has kept his promise to readers – this story does start with Anthro and end with Kamandi – but in-between is a confusing cross section of life in the DC Universe.
If you’re waiting for something heroic to happen, or even a good fight to break out, then maybe Final Crisis 2 or 3 will have something for you. In this issue, we get the Green Lanterns investigating the death of a New God. It’s an event they find shocking, which just goes to show they haven’t been reading that miniseries, Death of the New Gods, or talking with fellow Justice Leaguer Superman, who was involved in the action.
And if you haven’t been reading Justice League of America, you’re probably wondering who this Libra character that’s trying to take over the Secret Society of Supervillains is. Join the club.
Maybe all of this will read better in the trade, when the gaping holes can be filled in by turning a few more pages. For those of us going month-to-month, the effect is underwhelming. It just seems a mish-mash of characters, very few promising leads to what’s going on and no clear direction on where the story is headed.
Perhaps hype was the enemy, because Final Crisis 1 came with such pedigree and so many eager readers that it can’t live up to our expectations. Luckily for the upcoming second issue, my expectations are now lowered. Hopefully they’ll be knocked out of the park by the time this series ends.
– Greg Elwell