Tag Archives: final crisis


stormwatch 18 coverSTORMWATCH 18
Writer: Peter Milligan
Artist: Will Conrad
Publisher: DC
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche of Ain’t It Cool News)


I hold an unabashed love and adoration for the STORMWATCH and AUTHORITY of yore – even the “bad” times. They were more than a JUSTICE LEAGUE pastiche; they made sense with their totalitarian control of the world and eventually the omniverse. In an age where our systems and infrastructure continue to fail and disappoint us, the thought of the world’s most powerful beings helping us fix the problems – just makes sense.

It was with this history in mind, I gleefully started buying STORMWATCH’S first integration into DC continuity at the launch of the New 52. Well first I did get sucked in by the PR. STORMWATCH promised to be the shadow organization that would answer the question, “Who watches the WATCHMEN” or JUSTICE LEAGUE in this case. Old favorites like Jenny Quantumn, the dynamically gay duo, icity talking Jack Hawksmoor and Martian Fucking Manhunter would serve to clandestinely protect…everything.

And then the book came out. Instead of an exercise of who watches the JUSTICE LEAGUE, we got a book filled with more immature prats than the JUSTICE LEAGUE themselves – which is really really hard to pull off since the JUSTICE LEAGUE was suffering from some serious dame bramage in the first two arcs. We got some swordsman mother fucker, who wields…goddamn swords. This is like recruiting a special Olympiad for the real Olympic team. Jenny Quantum is virtually non-existent. We’ve learned more about the Engineer’s crotch than her prowess with machinery, and we have been subjugated to the Rachel/Ross “will they, won’t they” antics of Apollo & Midnighter. Their final coming together this issue was about as surprising as Brooke Shields getting knocked-up in Blue Lagoon since THEY’RE THE ONLY TWO GAY HEROES IN THE WORLD!

Jack Hawksmoor had a promising start; I liked the approach of each city having a tangible form and his interactions with these old souls. Sadly we haven’t seen that for about 12 issues. I don’t even know where he’s at now to be honest. Martian Manhunter completely said, “Fuck this noise” and we never saw him again until the recent JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA. Finally, the Carrier (whom I consider to be a character), is now less mobile than Mama Boo Boo.

Two other areas where the book showed promise was tracing back the team’s origin to the DEMON KNIGHTS and this whole concept of a Shadowlords being STORMWATCH’S ultimate keepers. Two very cool concepts, which seemed to vanish moments after they were mentioned.

Want to know the plot right now? I read it and I still can’t answer the question. All I can say with certainty is it’s almost over.

So why do I keep riding this hot mess month after month? Because like an abused housewife I believe it can get better. Also, if we walk away, books will only get cancelled — not fixed.

Since any moron with fingers can complain about a title, I like to be a special brand of moron that proactively tries to fix the situation, even if it falls on deaf ears.

FIX 1: Remember from whence you came – The great thing about these old AUTHORITY characters is that they weren’t tied to one boring old universe. They rode “the bleed” with reckless abandon, and as a a result fought God and Cthulhu incarnate. Remember that little thing called the multiverse that was reborn at the end of FINAL CRISIS? No, it’s OK I don’t blame you. After all, we’ve only seen three of the worlds since that event took place. Wouldn’t it be cool if STORMWATCH not only watched the prime JUSTICE LEAGUE, but every damn JUSTICE LEAGUE ever imaginable?

FIX 2: Arrogance is OK when warranted – Another thing that made the old AUTHORITY great was their uncompromising assuredness in…well…everything they did. MIDNIGHTER knows every move, Jenny can manipulate the very fabric of the universe, Jack controls every city, Engineer every machine, and Apollo is a freaking God. START ACTING THE PART GUYS! We have enough fallible heroes; let’s see some folks unwavering in their decisions and beliefs for a change.

FIX 3: When in Rome, stop watching it burn: Let’s assume my first fix becomes a reality (it won’t but let’s assume). I would never say STORMWATCH should stay away from Earth Prime, but when here, it’s time to be large and in charge. Use your clandestine super base in the sky to smack around the whelps of the New 52. Sit high atop your self-righteousness and give a good God damn when the heroes of Earth Prime act like fucktards. You know like they’ve been doing for the past 18 months.

Petty squabbles, convoluted origins and a complete lack of story cohesion are not STORMWATCH. My forgiveness will only last one more arc guys; Mr. Starlin needs to make it a good one. For the record I don’t fault Milligan, this blame goes right on the shoulders of editorial for choosing to mire this tale in a lackluster introduction-laden affair.

An Ode to FINAL CRISIS 1-28-09

Final Crisis 4The moon weeps as Darkseid gets in Turpin’s pants.

God bullets fired from the gun of Kirby shatter the illusions of shackling continuity for a new dawn of infinite confusion.

Darkened calculus suffocates hope;
Salvation in face painting gives purpose
To elementary school art teachers at last.

Horsedogs ride the night,
Their battle armor under a red son, 

A crimson beacon to warn the talking kitty cats
That cough hair balls of justice.

Boobies and boots,
A Marvel versus an El.
If only they didn’t fly,
Then Jello their battle would be bathed in.

The Rubik’s Cube of discord realigns the trinity
And bleeds through the parallel universe lava lamp.

The death of the Bat, 
Resurrection by a naked aborigine.

The Monitor’s world goes white,
All hail the 5th world. I think!?%


The view from 2012: I was right – BOOYA!


By Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche Ain’t It Cool News)

FINAL CRISIS is inflaming the ire of comic fans from both the pro and con sides of the fence. The pro side bandies about phrases like “you just don’t get it” or “viva la Kirby.” Conversely the people that are less enamored with this title incessantly whine about inaccessibility, lack of action and how hard it is being a stupid comic fan when trying to digest the genius of Morrison. However one resounding comment that seems to unite these battling voices is “It’s Grant Morrison, it will pay off in the end.”

Perhaps this is true. Perhaps issue seven will serve as the series’ Rosetta Stone, clearing all confusion and allowing us to traverse the earlier issues of the series with more clarity and thus far more appreciation for what was once underappreciated or completely unappreciated. But is this the way things should be? Should all series be critiqued with the sum outweighing the parts? As reviewers should we wait until the end of a series before passing absolute judgment? Well, as a reviewer I will emphatically say, “Absofuckinglutely not!” And here’s why…

Final Crisis 4First there is the simple element of good storytelling. All stories should have a beginning, middle and an end, or if we want to get all highfalutin they should follow Freytag’s Pyramid of exposition, rising action, climax, falling action and denouement  Unfortunately in our new world of writing for Trade Paper Backs we are treated to several issues of exposition, one issue of rising action, a few issue of climax, one-and-a-half issues of falling action and a page or two of denouement  This is all well and good when reading the TPB version of a series, but it’s hard to argue that the monthlies become a wasteland of simple incomplete story telling. There is a distinct difference between a cliffhanger and outright poor construction of a tale. By allowing this to happen it is essentially telling the monthly reader to take a flying fuck and just read everything nine, ten, eleven or fifty weeks after it has been released.

There was a time when comics were cheaper, yet seemed to offer more bang for the buck. I’m not pining for this forgotten era because it occurred well before Optimous sprung from his Mother’s loins. During this Paleolithic era, giant-size comic issues walked the earth and for a quarter or less you received not only a complete story, but at times two or three complete stories. Hell, even in today’s diminishing paged comics, some creators are able to offer a complete story in each issue of a series while still enticing the reader with cliffhangers. In my @$$holey opinion these are the singular issues that should be adorned with praise. And yes, we should hold incomplete and incomprehensible single issues accountable for their lackluster performance despite their cohesion when all is said and done. Until the day comes when we start paying a cut price for incomplete single issues, I will hold each 3, 4, or 5 dollar purchase accountable on its own merit. For as long as monthlies are distributed as fans we should expect, no, strike that, we should demand no less.

FINAL CRISIS COVERI’m not trying to make Morrison the poster boy for my rage, because there are certainly other creators guilty of dribbling out storylines like a clogged faucet. No, I think the blame falls squarely on the double dipping nature of comic publishers. Do we end the monthly? Perhaps, but it would be a damn shame to punish the writers that can still work within the monthly publishing model. Plus, ending monthlies at this time would cause a financial draught that I think few publishers could weather until they have enough of a backlog to churn out Trades at an equal rate. What I propose is a return to the now fossilized giant size issues. I would have loved to see FINAL CRISIS or 1985 come out as two giant sized issues rather than a seven month string along. As a reviewer I would also have been far more kind to a single king-size issue that compiles the exposition, rising action and first part of the climax in one tidy tome, rather than getting cock teased month after month.

FINAL CRISIS #4 (of 7) 10-22-08

The view from 2012: This wasn’t my review, but I am quoted as saying how little this event changed the DC Universe. Ohhh how wrong I was – this made continuity such a mess that New 52 was a necessity.

Final Crisis 4FINAL CRISIS #4 (of 7)
Writer: Grant Morrison
Artists: JG Jones, Carlos Pacheco and Jesus Merino
Published by: DC Comics
Reviewed by: BottleImp(with lotsa help from the rest of the @$$Holes)

“I have been reading all of the ancillary titles for FC and guess what? You don’t fucking need to. Just like we didn’t need to read 52 or COUNTDOWN or any of the muppet baby crises that we were told we had to read. Here’s FINAL CRISIS in a nutshell. The big three get sidelined. Darkseid first gets his ass kicked by Orion, becomes a nightclub owner and then broadcasts the anti-life equation. Libra was important, now I can’t find him or what he’s up to. Barry Allen returns to a world ruled by the broadcast anti-life equation. Yes, we waited this long for fucking algebra.” -Optimous Douche

“Yeah, FINAL CRISIS and DC in general is a mess. None of the titles reflect any of these big changes going on. Wonder Woman is a she-dog in FC, but fighting Beowulf in her own title. Barbara coming out to the Tattooed Man? Lower level crook or not, she would not just be out in the open like that. And what about Ollie introducing basically all of the Flash’s family to the same criminal? Because it worked so well in IDENTITY CRISIS when criminals knew about the family of heroes. On top of that, we’ve got too much unexplained shit going on. Morrison is flitting around from Turpin to Tattooed Man to Ollie to Mister Miracle. No real cohesion. No care that the reader may not know these people. And the rest of DC is just suffering for it. They are cowering in fear that because of the negative feedback they received when the New Gods dies three times last year, they are telling stories that don’t relate to this supposedly giant crisis. Why do we need a FINAL CRISIS tie in focusing on Geo Force or Black Lightning?” -Ambush Bug

“The irony for me is while you say why do we need a Geo Force/Black Lightening tie in, I actually found that aside more compelling than the main title, which I find sort of hard to get into. In fact I think most of the side light books are tons better than the main attraction.”-Jinxo 

“It just looks like DC doesn’t have a plan here. And can’t have a plan, because Morrison doesn’t have a plan. He may have one, but he’s not telling anyone. That’s why none of the main titles are referencing FINAL CRISIS and that’s why the ties the other BATMAN books have with RIP don’t go past the extent of “I don’t want to talk about the Batman thing right now.” To DC, that’s a crossover mention that is worth putting a RIP banner across the cover. I call bullshit. DC needs to learn that you can’t make a stable table with one or two legs. When that one leg fails to support the rest, the table topples over. That’s what’s happening with DC.”-Bug

“Come up with something original. Calling Morrison’s book FINAL CRISIS is a laugh. What will be the “final” outcome of this? I can’t see it. There’s no way they are going to allow the entire DCU to be a dark cesspool. INFINITE CRISIS irrevocably changed things, this book will not. I’m not hating it, and I like to see the little guy shine, but you could have just as easily called the thing Darkseid’s Revenge or something….”-OD

The preceding quotes were taken from @$$Hole email exchanges. Are you reading this, DC editorial staff? Do you see the problems that keep cropping up in regards to this “major event” book? ‘Cause even though the plot itself isn’t bad—always interesting to see heroes up against seemingly insurmountable odds—this title isn’t living up to the hype surrounding it. Events in FC have no bearing on the vast majority of DC’s comic titles…why should the reader be concerned about a character–say, Superman–when it is made perfectly clear in the three Superman family titles that he’s doing just dandy off on his own little adventure?

It’s this lack of cohesion that really kills this miniseries. No matter what good things may come out of it (personally, I find Morrison’s explanation of Kirby’s mysterious “Anti-Life Equation” to be fairly interesting, and at least makes it clear why Darkseid’s spent so much time looking for the darn thing), FC is doomed by poor planning and false advertising. As Optimous Douche wrote, FC is not the be-all, end-all of the DC Universe. It’s not going to change anything. Just take it for what it is—an overblown miniseries that’s been stretched over far too much time and far too many ancillary titles, and a story that is nowhere near as compelling as Dan DiDio or Grant Morrison would like us to believe.

Also, Kalibak now looks like a grumpy version of Mr. Tawny, the Talking Tiger. What the fuck is that about?