Welcome back to Weekly Weeklies: This week we in Batman Eternal #9 we see Batman head to Hong Kong for some international crime busting. Then we have Futures End #5 where… maybe we’ll see something exciting happen. Oh to dream. Let’s check ’em out:
WARNING: Spoilers Below
Batman Eternal #9
Lead Writer: John Layman
Corresponding Writers: Scott Snyder, James Tynion IV, Tim Seeley, and Ray Fawkes
Artist: Guillem March
Carmine Falcone has a problem and it’s not just of the Bat-variety: Catwoman is robbing all of his operations and businesses, possibly due to previous history they had (ostensibly related to those scars on his face). As a result, he has Commissioner Forbes come up with a plan to stop her. Meanwhile in Hong Kong, Batman teams up with Batman Incorporated member Jiro to investigate the time Falcone spent in the area and the gang war he caused there.
When at Jiro’s own Bat Cave of sorts, Batman meets Master Hong, a tea brewer and reader of tea leaves. He warns Batman that he needs to get back to Gotham soon, because there exists a threat that has yet to be revealed.
Jiro reveals that Falcone one day left the Gang War and returned to Gotham when it was clear that he was winning. Batman confronts Lan Kwai Kong, the other leader in the gang war about why Falcone left, but he is not sure why himself. Apparently, Falcone had unfinished business to attend to and handed over everything he had control over to Kong when he left.
When Catwoman attempts to break into another of Falcone’s vaults, she is ambushed and taken down. Falcone mentions he knows exactly who she is and what she is like before promising to scar and kill her.
When confronting Kong, Batman runs into an SRR agent who was there to take the gang leader down before she was stabbed. The name of the agent? Julia Pennyworth, which has Alfred looking quite shocked.
Just like last issue, this is another solid installment of Batman Eternal; we are given new subplots, elements, and characters; the narrative continues to build its storylines and get back to ones we haven’t touched on much (like with Catwoman) and ends with a fantastic cliffhanger that is sure to get you excited for next week. Plus, throw in some great writing (though it peters out by not telling us why Falcone left sadly) and some good artwork and you have another great issue of the series. Too bad we are switching artists next week instead of having March draw the entire arc.
Hmm… all this room is missing is a giant playing card in the corner.
Futures End #5
Writers: Brian Azzarello, Jeff Lemire, Dan Jurgens, and Keith Giffen
Artist: Jesus Merino
Mr. Terrific unveils his new creation to the entire world, (including Batman, Batman Beyond, Cyborg, and more), the uSphere: a personal floating orb computer that seems to back up your memories into it. Meanwhile, Mr. Faraday makes Grifter, who is still paralyzed, an offer that he can’t refuse.
On Cadmus Island, we see Fury from Earth 2 trying to escape the island while being persued by several OMACs. She manages to take them down, but is defeated by a mysterious little girl (who will be partnering up with Grifter).
After several weeks, Ronnie changes back from Firestorm and releases Jason. Jason is naturally pissed off at him, Ronnie stating he did it because he didn’t want Jason ratting him out to the Justice League after the Green Arrow incident. There’s some minor hinting about what happened to them during the war and Jason not wanting to be Firestorm after everything, but the scene ends with them departing and promising never to come back together.
Jason discovers that one of the scientists that he works for has created transporter technology, one that could work exactly like the Justice League’s. Or at least, something like that.
Somewhere in Kansas, Constantine wakes up, having been brought there by an old friend named Midge. She wants him to investigate some unexplained phenomena — the creation of a Killing Field that sucks the life out of people and the Earth. It could be a coincidence, the Killing Fields are in a corn field with designs that looks like Brainiac’s symbol.
To quote a person I follow on Twitter: “Futures End’s needs to the get f**king point.”
Seriously, last issue left off on some great storylines and seemed to promise some excitement this issue. I wanted to see the space mission with Frankenstein and Amaya to discover whatever happened to Stormwatch. I want to see what happens when Lois Lane confronts that “fallen” hero. I want to see all of this, but the series is still continuing to create more stories and subplots… and fails in making the issue exciting or thrilling. There are hints of interesting things to come, but they aren’t coming soon enough!
Again, the writing and artwork for the comic is not bad at all. The characterization is pretty good, with Mr. Terrific probably standing out the most in what direction they are going with him. The dialogue is decent, the story structure is fine and flows well, the pacing is decent, and such. But let’s get to the damn point; let’s get some excitement and danger and thrills going. With Batman Eternal being able to move and create storylines and subplots every issue but also keep it exciting and a lot of fun, there’s no excuse for Futures End to be this unengaging.
Ladies and gentlemen, prepare for a very cheesy commercial.