Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Morrison & Daniel
The banner at the bottom says “R.I.P The Missing Chapter” but really this is a Final Crisis missing chapter and a prelude to The Return of Bruce Wayne. The issue focuses on events that took place during Final Crisis, specifically the face-off with Darkseid. While the issue packs a lot of interesting information and completely enumerates how Batman ended up going backwards through time, the issue is out of place and I couldn’t get past it.
My problem with this issue is placed at the feet of DC editorial. I never read Final Crisis. I enjoyed R.I.P very much and Morrison’s run on Batman and Robin has been great, but I just didn’t bother with Final Crisis. This issue comes out more than a year and half after Final Crisis ended. Not only that, but the issue is also dropped into the Batman proper series. Why is this not its own post Final Crisis mini series? The only reason I can come up with is that DC editorial assumes that if you are reading Batman then you must have read Final Crisis. This may not seem to be an absurd assumption but it is still a terrible idea. To include a wrap-up issue from an event that was two events ago in a title that currently has its own event going on is just poor planning and can only alienate people that aren’t reading everything.
As for the issue itself it’s brilliant on a lot of levels. As this issue recaps, Batman used a gun on Darkseid back in Final Crisis. However, he didn’t simply break his vow to not use firearms. He made a magic bullet. This creation and explanation is brilliant and provides a game-changing moment where Batman didn’t use just any firearm when he faced off with Darkseid.
Perhaps the best part of the narrative is how Morrison ties it up at the end while still dropping hints about what is to come. I’m sure there are more nuggets in here that calls upon other previous stories but I either didn’t pick up on them or I didn’t read the other stories.
Daniel’s art is inked heavily and it reminded me so much of Frank Miller which isn’t a bad thing at all. This was definitely not an issue that looked like classic Tony Daniel. I’m not sure why the art direction was done this way but I did enjoy the darker and grittier depiction here.
Let’s be honest, if you read Final Crisis then this is a must-have issue. You are going to love it. If you are the rare person that followed Morrison’s run on Batman but not Final Crisis, like me, then you will be entertained but frustrated. DC is weaving such a complicated web where their titles are too interconnected over too long of a period of time. It’s frustrating and it’s making me question how I can continue to read the few characters I still follow in their universe.
3 out of 5 Geek Goggles