The masked Superman of the Five Years Later future of The New 52: Future’s End is revealed! But what did we think of the reveal?
Previously on The New 52: Futures End: Batman Beyond crashed into the past to prevent an apocalypse only he’s too late! Now, he’s stuck in a future where a masked Superman flies, but who is he?
LIGHTNING ONLY STRIKES ONCE
There’s one glaring problem with The New 52: Futures End. None of the storylines in these pages make this weekly series feel like a cohesive book. There’s the Grifter storyline, the Constantine storyline, the Tim Drake storyline, the Batman Beyond storyline, and the masked Superman storyline, and that’s not even all of them. One can understand the need for a weekly series to have plenty of plots so the issues can rotate, and the characters never become stale. However, The New 52: Futures End goes overboard and fails to do what this issue succeeded at. Simply focusing on one character at a time.
The main thrust of this issue is Superman. There’s been a man flying around Metropolis with a mask on, and some people do not trust that he is the real Superman, Lois Lane included. During a fight, Superman’s mask is knocked off, and to be honest, I was surprised by the reveal. I haven’t read this series consistently to catch all the clues, but I was not expecting who was really underneath that helmet.
Each storyline and character gets a max of four to five pages to tell their story. So each plot feels rushed. Including the reveal of Emiko and Diggle going to avenge the death of Green Arrow. During certain weeks of 52. some issues would deal specifically with one character. This let the reader empathize and care about that storyline before we slammed into another plot line the next week. After 17 weeks, The New 52: Futures End hasn’t come anywhere close to that consistency and no storyline feels truly engaging.
Patrick Zircher can draw some beautiful rain. His art in this issue looks dynamic and has developed a definite style. Quite the opposite look from the Patrick Zircher we saw in previous issues of Future’s End. His panel blocking has increased giving some of the characters some dynamic poses in a lot the panels. The art in this issue is truly its saving grace.
THE BOTTOM LINE: GO BACK TO THE PAST
The New 52: Futures End #17 should be a great DC weekly comic. It has the best writers, artists, and Batman Beyond is a main character! Unfortunately, it seems like editorial edict is forcing this book to go in certain directions instead of the writer’s guide for characters. Unless you are a massive fan of alternate future storylines, stay away from this book.