Sunday, 18 January 2009

Final Crisis #6 review

I have one more deadline tomorrow so when I should be working naturally I am blogging! It was my B-day this past week and I treated myself to some comic products. Showcase Supergirl v2 and Showcase Legion of Superheroes v1 most notably. I was also going to get the DC vault but that was sold out. Anyone have any reviews on the content of the vault for a legion and supergirl fan like myself? I also picked up my comic stash for the first time since Christmas Eve. (The one day of the year we in england got comics early or in sync with america!).

What I found most interesting was my Supergirl purchases. For the second month I couldn't find cosmic adventures in the 8th grade. I have to believe Forbidden Planet Manchester aren't ordering it or its flying off the shelves. Also for the second month I couldn't find Supergirl on the shelves despite them still carrying issues pre-Gates. Funnily enough Supergirl #36 was released on christmas eve and was out of stock that same day in Forbidden Planet Liverpool. I had to settle for the varient cover from the third store I tried despite loving Middleton's regular cover. I should hope that this means order numbers will be going up.

This leads to to what I can review. Out of Maelstrom 5, Cosmic adventures, Supergirl and Final Crisis I chose the last. Firstly we start with the cover. At first sight I thought Batman looked very frail on the cover. I just don't see the power in his pose. Its still a great rendition of the hero though. I like how the batsymbol is raised. It doesn't look like spandex. Thats always irked me. Superman in spandex I can believe, Batman is spandex just makes me giggle. Also for a man who is prepared for anything his utility pouches don't scream techno! As with all the covers he is on a plain background. This issue its navy Blue. I've not liked this technique as it makes the image look flat. The best this has been used was on issue three but even then it made Supergirl's hair look choppy. I would have preferred painted backgrounds to create some depth.

As for the interior art its Jones and Pacheco who come through with the best pages. The Black Canary pages are not only sub par they are sylistically out of place. I would have preferred the additon of Jamal Igle as his style would have fitted more. As for Mahnke's concluding pages they were far too lined compared to the relative simplicity of Jones and Pacheco. He does very well on the war torn landscape but less well on the faces. His Superman is gaunt and has a pea head on a giant torso. I do love his depiction of Metron. the lines are clean. Where he does have inked shading the lines are blue rather than heavy black shadows he uses for other characters.

As for the script well I'll go back to the start and run through. I loved the opening. Legion is often left out of these crossover events and this one seemed to be no different. It seemed like LO3W was just a way to include them in some way. It was to my shock and delight that we begin with Brainiac 5 and Superman in the 31st century. What has happened between 3 and 6 to get him there I assume will be told next week with Superman Beyond. To see Brainaic 5 setting up the solution to the Final Crisis made me so happy. I actually wanted to see whether a Brainaic could stand anti-life considering their intelligences but this is good enough. At first I was wondering why Superman had to use the machine when surely Brainy was more qualified but now I look at it Brainy says 'Just Look'. He isn't using it, he sees Metron's circuit I assume. Although why Brainy just couldn't say that I don't know. Superman isn't exactly a genius! Another question I'm left with is how this revelation clicks in Superman's head so he knows what to do and what is happening.

We move on to the Justice League Watchtower with Black Canary and the reformed Tattooed Man. They are attacked by justifiers in tie fighters who come through the Green Lantern blockade of the Earth. Its never explained how. Tattooed Man uses his power and Metron's symbol is activated. It makes him immune to anti-life's effects. It gives the heroes an opening to fight back. There are some great moments here. Barbara Gordon takes advantage of the anti gravity to beat some guys for example. The best though is the dialogue between Dinah and Ollie. She attempts to beat sense in to him. I find this is beautiful when in contrast to the reunion of Barry and Iris. I kiss of true love and she is cured. Fighting will get people nowhere, its love here that will save the day but Dinah can't give Ollie that one kiss. In one panel we are treated to an Aquaman appearance. The secret files say that this an alternate universe Arthur Curry. The traditional Aquaman we expect. More on this later...

Next onto Supergirl vs Mary Mavel. The much publicised Girl Fight is satisfying for all concerned. Buildings fall, buses are used as weapons and sexual innuendo flies! Supergirl wins this pretty resoundingly but we get the sense Desaad (who mary is host to) doesn't care to win. The darkness influences everyone and Supergirl showcases her darker thoughts 'don't be too sure I won't break your neck' before coming back to the good and affirming her desire not to hurt Mary. Its pretty sad that the outcome was unnecessary for Marvel fans. All they wanted was their girl back to herself and free of responsibility for her previous actions and they got both.

The highlight of the issue was Tawky Tawny taking on Kalibak in his tiger body. I don't think anyone expected this to go Tawky's way but it does and he defeats Kalibak with style. After all this tiger is a gentleman. The tiger men from the Bludhaven bunker show their allegience to the strong ie. tawky and valuble new allies are gained.

Finally I want to talk about Checkmate castle. Here we learn about Sonny Sumo and how he came from another universe. Look at his dialogue 'Sonny Sumo went back in time and died a happy man in feudal japan. I stumbled through a hole in MY life, into HIS life'. Sonny Sumo talks in the third person. This is confusing. If he went into HIS life wouldn't he be in Japan? Is this Sonny? I think it means that Sonny died and was reborn in the New Earth Sonny. Could this be the same for the more recognisable Aquaman who we know is from another universe? What universe does the more recognisable Aquaman come from...Earth-One. Which leads us to the plan from the Atoms. What is left of Earth is planning to escape to a new earth. Is the new Aquaman part of the consequences of the travelling done before. Is the graviton superhighway already open for business since countdown? It isn't hard to believe that whats left of New Earth will go to Earth One and blend into their neighbours.

I expect grant to take another right turn by the time this is over though. I can't see whats coming next. Is New Earth really doomed? Will it become New Apokolips or Kamandi's world? Is Nazi Supergirl dead? (Everyone says yes, I say no because if she was why keep showing her?) Is the brain in Lord Eye, Maxwell Lord? Will the heroes settle on Earth-One or rebuild Dax Novu's destroyed world using the miracle machine and B5's immense intellect? Why has Earth One been so elusive? Whats certain is that the starting pistol has gone and Final Crisis is hurtling to its close. Lots of Questions still to answer in an oversized number #7. See you in ten days!

(I think, barring delays)


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