Countdown to Final Crisis: One

countdown 1How utterly fitting. In a series where absolutely nothing of importance happened over the course of fifty tedious issues, it is only fitting that the finale is similarly devoid of any points of interest.

Still, the series accomplished what it set out to accomplish, I suppose. They killed all of the New Gods, and they established the fact that there are fifty-two Monitors watching over each of the fifty-two universes of the Multiverse. They also made it so that Brother Eye is in hiding, with only one OMAC left at his disposal, which is a far cry from before the series, when Brother Eye was in hiding, with only one OMAC at his disposal. They also turned “Mary Damn Marvel” evil and changed Jason Todd from the ruthless, loner vigilante he used to be into the all-new and improved ruthless, loner vigilante that he is now. Holly Robinson and Harley Quinn and the Pied Piper were also dealt with; they went from being lost and purposeless to being…uh, purposeless and lost. Plus, some supervillains were rounded up and shipped off-world. Oh, and some universes died and were reborn.

Why have I been so critical of this series, then? Simple. The New Gods dying wasn’t really covered here; it had its own mini-series for that. The Monitors were established in Brave New World. Salvation Run took care of the missing supervillains story, and the Challengers never really did anything of note. Well, unless you count going from universe to universe for no reason, fighting big bug monsters, eventually heading to Apokolips, leaving, watching a dead but reborn earth die again, and then going home as “something of note.” Because if that’s the case, well, yeah, sure, I guess they did something. Hit the jump.

What happens in this finale, though, you might be wondering. Nothing, really. They tie up the “loose ends,” I suppose. Donna Troy, Kyle Rayner, Forager, and Jimmy Olsen meet with Ray Palmer and the Monitor of the dead universe, deciding they need to, “Monitor the Monitors.” So they say so.

Elsewhere, Pied Piper shows up in an alleyway with the same rats he talked to in the first issue, and he says it’s good to be home.

Elsewhere, Jason Todd says he’s done being a sidekick, and that he’s still bitter that Batman didn’t do anything when the Joker “killed” him (even though the one semi-interesting plot point of this series was seeing what would have happened to Batman if he had done something).

Elsewhere, Buddy Blanks turns into the last OMAC (only this OMAC wears gold shorts and has big gold bracelets around his wrists and ankles, plus he has an entirely human face; he still has the blue mohawk, though).

Elsewhere, Mary Marvel meets with Black Adam, and he says she’s dumb and leaves her all alone.

Wait, what? Where did he fucking come from? Oh well. What the heck.

Elsewhere, Harley and Holly talk about fate, and Holly tells Harley to never change.

Apparently, every character of this book took that advice. There was absolutely no character development to speak of throughout this entire thing. Instead of titling this finale, “Loose Ends,” they should’ve titled it, “Back to Square One,” since this thing leaves everybody exactly where they started. Now, this is a literary device that isn’t always a bad thing (everything being back to normal at the end of a big huge story), but the thing is that nothing happened in-between the beginning and the end, so it’s almost as if the writers are looking directly through the issue, at all of the readers, and saying, “You just wasted so much money, and, look, absolutely nothing happened. You’re such a chump!”

Perhaps the most fitting thing about it all, though, is that, for a series that has struggled so much with ever accomplishing anything anywhere near interesting, it failed even more pointedly in the simplest and most basic way: It counted down to absolutely nothing and ends with no momentum or even suggestion that something is going to come next. We have no better idea of what Final Crisis is going to be about now than we did at the start of this thing. The fuse has burned all the way to the very end of the line. What happens now?


Nuts. Just a dud.