Written by: Peter J. Tomasi
Art by: Jorge Jimenez, Alejandro Sanchez and Rob Leigh
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: May 18, 2016
While I have been a bit down on the Final Days of Superman as a whole, it is still one of the best Superman stories of the New 52. That actually sounds even sadder as I wrote it and I guess being a Superman fan has been pretty sad for years. I'd love to say that the end is near, but who the hell knows what we are going to get with Rebirth. I was hoping by this point that we'd have a bit more of an idea, but unfortunately, that's one of my biggest problems with this crossover. We aren't really moving forward. Tomasi has used each issue to do a little recap, introduce a new character and then move on to the next chapter where we rinse and repeat. Hey, I'm not against a nice rinse now and again, it's the repeat that gets me down.
I'm sure that all you haters out there are mumbling, "But Jim, we got to see the New 52 Superman meet the Pre-Flashpoint Superman last issue!" First off, stop mumbling! People will hear you mumbling and think you are a psycho and while you may be a hater, I'd hate for people to get the wrong idea about you. I mean, it's tough enough making new friends nowadays without people thinking you're a loony tune. You're welcome and yes, we did finally get the meeting of the two Supermen and it barely lasted one panel. EPIC FAIL! Maybe we will get more this issue and I'll look like a real idiot, right? Really? You think I would write that without first reading the issue? I am not that big of a dummy...or am I? Let's find out...
The issue opens with Solar Superman being a little more solar than I remember him at the end of last issue. He is still going on about joining the Justice League, but he isn't impressing who we all know are the three people with any real say in the matter. Sorry guys, but we all know it's true. He continues ruining his chances by trying to kill Lois Lane and just being crazy. Oh yea, I guess Superman doesn't really appreciate the whole "impersonating" thing either.
We then go and take a peak at Pre-Flashpoint Lois and Clark who are flying with their son, Jon...but where are their dog and cat? Where's Ranger, Jonno?!? Jonno????? I really think they dropped them somewhere in Utah. Not dropped off...dropped! Oh well.
We all know that they are going to the Fortress and it looks as awesome here as it does in the regular Lois and Clark book. This scene is really brief, but I liked it a whole bunch. Lois calls Clark out for his secret lair and Jon is like a kid in a candy store running around, taking in the sites.
The issue continues with Batman being a real dick to Lois and showing that Tomasi really doesn't have much for him to do in this crossover. Then we get Superman and Wonder Woman double teaming Solar Superman. It's not as sexy as it sounds as the two keep pounding him over and over and harder and harder. On second thought... It all ends with them knocking the super out of him and we see him revert to just Denny Swan, piece of shit con. That's it...I will now call him "Con-El"!
While I really wanted to see what Superman and Wonder Woman would do to Denny, we really don't get the chance. Before you can bat an eye, he gets his Solar powers back and possibly sets off a Solar Flare. I say "possibly" because it doesn't seem to have the range of a Solar Flare or the after effects of one. It certainly does a number on Wonder Woman, though! The issue ends with Supergirl getting forced back into the story and Con-El and Kal-El going on a little trip.
This issue continues the main problem I've been having with most of this story. Nothing really happens. This is the penultimate issue of the crossover and in my mind we have barely moved forward since the second issue. That's bad enough, but most of what does happen was confusing or irritating. Why didn't Pre-Flashpoint Superman immediately return to help after making sure Lois and Jon were safe in the Fortress? I don't want to hear "maybe next issue", either. They looked like they were getting ready for movie night! Was that a Solar Flare? What's actually wrong with Supergirl and what are the DEO doing to repower her? Why aren't they doing the same thing to Superman?!?! Where are Jon's dog and cat?!?! Where's the Chinese Superman?!?! Why am I getting so angry and using so many question marks and exclamation points?!?!
I am going to hold out hope that all of this and everything else will be resolved in next week's issue, but right now I am just angry. Angry that this story didn't continue the promise of the first two issues and angry that I care so much about it that I am getting angry.
I am not angry at Jorge Jimenez or Alejandro Sanchez. The art and color work in this book was simply fantastic. I especially liked the Pre-Flashpoint Superman stuff that had an appropriate Lee Weeks feel and the Solar Superman bits that just jumped off the page. With everything I've put down in this whole crossover, the art has been consistently good and this may be my favorite looking issue since the very first one. Great job guys!
Bits and Pieces:
While I initially thought this final crossover would cleanse my palate of the bad New 52 Superman taste, it's hasn't. In fact, story wise, it's starting to taste very similar. I loved the art, but with poor pacing and inconsistent storytelling that brings up more questions than it answers, I can't recommend it. Rebirth can't come soon enough.