I’ve really been trying to give “New 52 Future’s End” a wide birth. Sure it doesn’t seem like my thing but that doesn’t mean somebody else can’t enjoy it. After all, they are “shaking up” the DC universe and anything to get us away from the New 52 can’t be that bad right? I was even feeling rather positive about the whole thing; first they killed their ass-hat Green Arrow and then the cover solicitation showed beardy face Oliver Queen himself. Blimey, I thought, perhaps DC has been watching every Wednesday as I find as many New 52 “Green Arrow” comics as I can, gathering them in a pile, and doing a little wee on them as I cry. So this week I cracked the cover, took a read, and now I know “New 52 Future’s End” has some explaining to do.
To understand my grievances first understand as a regular comic book story “New 52 Future’s End” isn’t bad. There’s decent fighting and action, a lot of fan favorites make an appearance, and there is certainly a sense of urgency and doom. But peeling back the layers, I kept getting annoyed at their creative decisions. First one off the bat, this issue takes place on what is essentially “Arrow Island” and immediately I got the bad taste of the television show in my mouth. “Arrow” is not a bad show, it’s not something I should spend any time rallying against. However, if there was one thing I could sentence the writers to the phantom zone for it would be the God Damn Fucking Shit Balls Mother Bitch Ass Cunting Twat Faced flash backs to that Cock Shit Two Ton Fucking Island. Anyone who watches the show knows, that island does for television what a shrapnel grenade does for colons, it makes everything an unwatchable mess. Now why, out of all the places you could send Oliver Queen did it have to be an island? And why once we’re on the island did you think it was a good idea to have a goddamn flash back?
Okay, okay, okay, sometimes there’s no better way in comics to deliver exposition than through a flashback. I understand that but also why did it have to be so ham fisted. The flashback is Red Arrow explaining events that happened to Big Barda to Big Barda. Let me explain: Red Arrow and Big Barda both came from another universe together on the same ship. Why does he have to explain the entire story that she lived through back to her? At one point she even gets mad at him because she was there, she saw. The whole point of the flashback was to explain whether or not Miracle Man was alive. Spoiler, he is which is something that would have been said at the very beginning of any conversation. “Hey, you know that friend you thought was dead? He’s not. Here’s why.” They wait until near the end of the conversation to say that he was magically teleported away, a mighty cop out instead of letting the character die. But the whole premise of this issue is two friends withholding information. Why? There was nothing to be gained. I would understand if he were trapped in a prison impossible to escape from and he was doomed but at the very end Red Arrow announces he reformed the Outsiders and is gonna get him out. What I’m saying is a lot of this issue was unnecessary.
One last issue I have with this book is the Outsiders. Now in pre 52 continuity, the Outsiders was my favorite team of heroes. They were a bunch of great characters who had a purpose and there was a distinct reason for them to exist, they weren’t just another Justice League clone. They were the black ops, the dark secret, they were the dirty stuff that Batman knew had to get done but couldn’t be done by the Justice League. Super cool premise. So what does this new group stand for? Oh they’re a bunch of guys, some of them are from another universe. They’ve all been living on Arrow Island. Other than that? Nothing. It’s just a gimmick, another thing we fans love used like a condiment without any thought or logic. This may be petty but as a fan of a property I’m allowed to be petty. This is something I cherished. It’s like having your favorite burger at a restaurant called “The Burger” only one day you come back and order “The Burger” and the waiter brings out a bowl of rice and chicken. It may very well be really good rice and chicken but it’s not what I asked for and five points from Gryffindor for ironic naming.
The idea of assembling a strike team for an impossible mission isn’t terribly new, it’s a staple of comics really. “Invincible” did it when Mark assembled various aliens and artifacts in order to take on the Viltrumites. That felt like a proper emergency where urgency was the course de jour. It was the sort of thing where everything had to be in tip top shape because what they had to fight was nigh unkillable. They also allowed proper time to explain the threat and why they had to go after it. There was none of this faffing about with needless exposition. Everyone knew the stakes and they felt a rightious drive to face the perpetrators no matter the risk of bodily injury or death.