Final Crisis # 4 (of 7) (DC – Morrison / Jones / Pacheco / Merino)
It’s one month after the Anti-Life Equation was released worldwide. Millions now toil as slaves of Darkseid, while the Justifier shock troops of Apokolips lay waste to the planet Earth and hunt down its protectors. The remaining free humans and superheroes are stationed around the world, besieged within the walls of ten very familiar ‘Watchtowers’, as they fight a desperate, losing battle against the triumphant forces of evil. While Green Arrow and Black Canary attempt to deliver the secret of humanity’s last hope across America’s blasted wastelands, the Outsiders brave the horrors of the Bludhaven bunker in search of Batman. The ultimate battle is coming…but which heroes will become villain – and vice versa? And what part do the Secret Society have to play in the dawning of this new Age of Evil? Darkness is falling and death rules the day. Is this truly the end of the Age of Super Heroes? Don’t miss FINAL CRISIS #4: “How to Murder the Earth!”
The issue opens up with a mini-montage of showing how the Anti-Life Equation got spread throughout every communication system on earth spreading it’s dark gospel. We see what’s left of the scattered heroes of Earth as they try to set up watchtowers against Darkseid’s forces. We watch hero after hero fall… Black Lightning, The Atomic Knights, Green Arrow, Mister Miracle. Grant Morrison lets us know that defeat and destruction are all that’s left. The final parting blow of the issue is seeing the rebirth of Darkseid into his new fifth world body.
I know it is common in Morrison’s works to be about half way through and be thinking “what is going on?”, Why am I reading this? Where is this going?” and lo and behold that is most people are thinking as they march through what is DC’s biggest event of the last few years. Given everything that has happened here, and how it is not meshing with DC’s flagship books (the JSA are in the middle of a Gog storyline in their book but defending the Earth here, Superman has a return to Krypton and Batman being hooked to a machine at the end of FC #2 is not jiving with Batman: RIP just to name a few) Final Crisis is coming across very “huh?” to the monthly DCU reader. Unless of course the whole Final Crisis is happening in Bat’s head. With Morrison at the helm who knows? Odds are most fans will not get it at the time, but it will praised in the future as “groundbreaking”
Some very weird things happening here, hard to tell which will have meaning and which won’t, all I am sure is that it will be an interesting year coming up for DC Comics.
Issue Grade: C