Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Earth 2: Futures End #1 Review and *SPOILERS*

Written By: Daniel H. Wilson
Art By: Eddy Barrows
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: September 3, 2014

Double Jeopardy

This is usually where I give a recap of the previous issue, but you know what?  I don't have to because it's EVENT MONTH!  That's right boys and girls we're putting a pause on our normal fun and games and taking a trip to Five Years From Now.  So this is Earth 2: Futures End #1 and while we expect to see Earth 2 heroes and or villains tearing up the pages of this issue, we'll be dealing with Mister Terrific and how things almost went completely wrong for him one night, which leads us to a new mystery on the Futures End front.  So let's quit talking about it and........... Well talk about it a little more specifically as we dive into the Futures End Event of Earth 2.  Let's check it out.

Explain It!:

Our story begins with Michael Holt putting some finishing touches on his latest product "The U-Sphere", before he has to go make a military demonstration with the applications of T-Spheres.  Is it just me or does he really have a thing for balls and I guess selling his balls to the public?  Before we head off to the demo though, we take a quick look at Michael's pet project "The God Killer", which appears to be a series of sustained spherical boom tubes.  But don't worry they're unstable and Michael hasn't been able to control them, so they couldn't be any trouble could they?

Now Michael and his chief security officer Sonia, who you might remember from earlier in Earth 2 when the new Batman broke into the Arkham facility to break out Aqua Woman and Jimmy Olsen, head out to the military demonstration.  Now get this, you'd imagine that Michael Holt being one of the smartest men in the world would be worth a pretty penny right?  Me too, so why is it that the two of them head outside and try to hail a taxi to get where they are going?  It doesn't make sense to me and then after the cabby denies them a ride because Sonia isn't from Prime Earth, the two then take a helicopter to their appointment.  "Oh can't get the taxi, I guess since I'm a billionaire we might as well take my helicopter."  Come on!  How do we go from a taxi to a helicopter?  Maybe it's just me.

At the demonstration we meet up with Earth 2 hero turned bad dude, Terry Sloan who has developed goggles which identify if a person is from this world or not and besmirches Holt's T-Sphere tech.  After the reunion with Sloan and the demo is finished, Holt and Sonia try to leave the facility when they are stopped at the gate and asked for their world ID.  Well you know something is off here when the guard equipped with the new goggles sees Michael as a Earth 2er and at gun point asks him to exit the vehicle.  Now I don't know if I'm not up with my ethnic slurs or if I'm not up with my fictional Earth 2 slurs, but the guard calls him a "Dryback" and Michael seems to take offense to it.  As far as slurs go, I don't get it.  So Michael lays on the gas, breaks through the barricade and makes a run for it.  Now we see that Terry Sloan is behind this dastardly business, but not just Terry Sloan, but his duplicate from Prime Earth.  So the two smartest men in two worlds just set up Michael and that can't be good.  We see as Michael's face goes all over New York, claiming he's an impostor and the Sloans take over his lab and take control of "The God Killer" that Michael was working on in the beginning.  

With his world turned upside down Michael goes to a hospital for special children to get some answers and these answers are in the form of Earth 2's Jimmy Olsen, who apparently hasn't spoken since the Earth 2 war.  Except it seems that this is only because he chooses not to, because when Michael shows up, Jimmy solves a Rubik's cube and tells him he has a message for him.  Now this part I don't understand at all.  All at once the Rubik's cube becomes a strange tech cube and it tells Michael everything he needs to do.  Maybe it's because I've never solved a Rubik's cube that I don't get this, but I don't think so.  Still, I might have to pull out the old toy and give it another try.  I could use some mysterious answers in my life.

So with the knowledge he needs, Michael gets back into his lab and offers the Sloans a trade.  In exchange for putting his life back the way it was, he'll complete the work on "The God Killer" for them.  Now I don't know if we had a giant time jump here, or if Michael just needed to be motivated, but he seems to get it operational very quickly and when he does he high tails it out of there because he knows what kind of person Sloan is.  That meaning that he will instantly betray his double.  The two Sloans battle over who will become a God with this device and it seems like the Sloan from Earth 2 will be the God, since he made his duplicate's insides be on the outside.........Gross.  Before the sole surviving Sloan can celebrate his Godhood, the God Killer explodes ending any plans he had on using it as a weapon.

In the end we find out that Michael programmed the boom tubes to sink into the core of the Earth and before Terry Sloan can escape we find out using his goggles that this version of Sloan is not from Prime Earth or Earth 2, so we have another mystery to add to Futures End.  Hopefully this little experience will make Mister Terrific think twice before going on television and accusing someone of being from another Earth like he did to Batman Beyond in the weekly Futures End title.

That's it for Earth 2 and while it wasn't a bad issue, it was hard as hell to follow what was going on and I still have no idea what was up with that Rubik's cube.  Continue your foray into the land of Five Years From Now all month as wee see our heroes in their strange futures.

Bits and Pieces:

I don't know if the story was written erratically or if the art couldn't convey the story properly, but this issue was a task in following.  While I like the motto that every comic is someone's first, this definitely shouldn't be anyone's first if they want to have any idea about what's going on.  I do have to say that Eddy Barrows is someone I love seeing on this book and he continues making this title look great.  The problems I have could just be trying to fit too much into a normal size issue and it just comes off cramped.  Now while the cover says Earth 2, don't expect seeing your favorite heroes from that title here, it's a straight up Mister Terrific story, so don't be fooled by the title and cover.


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