What They Say:
FLASH FACT: The war between the Amazons and the Atlantians has arrived. The battle between Diana of Themyscira and Emperor Aquaman will tear this world apart – unless The Flash can fix it!
After four issues of the main series and a significant number of miniseries, all of it has come to this point where the various story arcs that went big tie in here. There’s a lot of supporting elements that came into the series from all the miniseries and a lot of them were pretty good, especially as the shades of what was going on between the two sides culminated in the massive fight on New Themyscira. There’s a lot of good stuff that went into it with the Atlanteans and Amazons and how the war has been manipulated as well as all the other sides. Unfortunately, a good amount of all of this is essentially minimized and barely used as the focus in this final extra sized issue revolves around Barry, Thomas and Thawne. That focus isn’t bad, since that’s where so much of this has been dealt with in the main series, but it feels like everything else that the miniseries worked to make important was cast aside.
Barry and Thawne’s fight is what dominates things and it does have the good material it needed where Thawne makes it clear to Barry that Barry himself is the real villain here because of his time travel to the past. Thawne definitely gets his gloating in and he’s definitely feeling that he’s earned this as the game he’s played against Barry all these years has gone big like this. Causing Barry to take to the past as he did and altering everything he cared about to save one person is definitely cruel. And even worse is that Thawne gets to point out that he’s managed to escape the time stream himself as he was traveling through time when Barry did everything. So even if Barry dies, Thawne can still be who he is and the timestream no longer affects him.
The fights that unfold here are pretty good overall and Thomas Wayne as Batman really does it up right, giving it the kind of edge and difference to it that’s deserved since he’s certainly not Bruce but there are plenty of shared traits. The arrival of Superman brings some power to it all as well, and hope for Barry, but like a lot of the things going on in this issue related to the miniseries storylines, it’s barely given any time or serious impact at all. And even worse, the overall fight feels kind of anticlimactic as it instead shifts to a different area as Barry tries to correct things and discovers that there’s a larger threat going on that everyone is unaware about. The brief sequence introduces us to a mysterious woman who talks about three timelines that Barry sees that need to be merged in order to deal with some impending force of doom. I actually like this explanation of the reason for the merging of the timelines which goes into the relaunch and explains some of what’s going on. It’s an interesting foundation that can be used going forward.
This digital edition of the book from Comixology is the regular version that includes two covers. The first has Flash in the clutches of Professor Zoom who himself has Batman in his grasp while the second cover has Batman making his attack on Zoom. The variant cover of the first one in pencil rough form is also included here which is very welcome.
With the conclusion of the summer event series, the final issue is definitely a bit of a mixed bag. While it looks great and has some solid moments to it, particularly the setting for why the timelines are being merged, it feels like it falls very short of what it needed to do with the way it deals with all the miniseries that were supposed to tie into it. I liked a lot of the event overall and the final moments here are definitely intriguing, the core series feels like it finished without reaching its potential and somewhat anticlimactic as well. I also particularly didn’t care for the epilogue between Bruce and Barry with how that could rather surprisingly undermine a good part of what Bruce is all about. It’s good in one way, but it largely comes across as a negative to me. Still, with what it’s unleashed into the world, I’m pleased with it overall and liked the various key moments here.