Saturday, May 3, 2014

The New 52: Futures End #0 Review

Written by: Jeff Lemire, Brian Azzarello, Keith Giffen and Dan Jurgens
Art by: Dan Jurgens, Aaron Lopresti, Patrick Zircher and Jesus Merino
Cover Price: Free
Release Date: May 3, 2014

The Beginning is the End

Free comic book day has a special treat this year.  Mixed among the reprints and movie tie-ins is Futures End #0.  I will not be reviewing the regular weekly book, my man Eric is doing that.  However, he was too damn lazy to go grab his copy at our local shop before they ran out.  I did pickup a copy for him and myself, but I wanted to get the review up tonight.  Why?  Because I'm a workaholic?  No, just because of how impressed I was after reading it.

The book opens 35 years in the future and things are not going so well.  Brother Eye has killed and/or assimilated most of the heroes.  A few are still fighting the good fight, but the war appears to be over.  One of the heroes still fighting is Batman.  We learn that this grim future is due largely to him and also that he has a plan...he's going back to stop it before it happens. Unfortunately, he doesn't make it long enough to go, so another hero has to step up. Cut to Batman Beyond and cue Huey Lewis.  We're gonna go back in time!

The heavy hitting writers on the book don't hold anything back.  Showing this potential future is only going to immediately push the tension to the breaking point in the weekly book.  They also set the tone and man is it grim.  We're talking killing, maiming and dismemberment grim.  Watching your favorite hero get disintegrated or turned into a robotic slave makes the book feel large.

The best part of this preview issue is the art.  Man it looks good.  I usually scream when there are multiple artists, but it isn't a problem here.  From the multiple (and surprising) characters involved, the awesome action and the grotesque transformations, everything is great to look at.

The only problem with this preview issue is the feeling of been-there-done-that.  Time changing, futuristic dystopian stories have become a dime a dozen.  Add in the heroes gone bad element and deja vu really sets in.  However, with the stellar talent assembled on the book, I am confident the it won't drown in cliches.

Bits and Pieces:

If Futures End #0 is supposed to get the reader hyped for the weekly hitting shelves this week (which it is) then mission accomplished.  It is a dark story with great art that really feels like an important event.  I am officially excited for Futures End and I couldn't say that last week.  I highly recommend you get your hands on your free copy before they run out and you end up like Eric.  Empty handed again.


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