I will admit, that anytime I pick up and read a Grant Morrison comic line, I swear that I can hear Han Solo whispering in my ear about the perils of “delusions of grandeur”.
Final Crisis definitely falls into this trap. It is epic. It is filled with heroes and villains, well known and well forgotten. The artwork is terrific, though not always correct. Come on, if you draw cave men to look like cave men then how does the lone cave girl look like Red Sonja in a fur bikini? Nice eye candy but come on.
Final Crisis is the story of what if evil wins. What if good does not triumph? And in the hands of Grant Morrison it becomes an exercise in cerebral hemorrhaging. There are Gods. There are Green Lanterns. There are Heroes and there are Villains. Way too many to count.
And there are Supermen. Lots and lots of varieties of Supermen. All the Flashes show up too as well as the Black Racer, the one called Death.
There is Darkseid who turns the world into his own image. Heroes fall and are controlled to do his bidding. You eventually will need a scorecard to figure out who is on who’s side. But the baddies eyes turn red so that is some help. There is also Mandrake, a soul and world eating vampire kind of God. Superman and the whole host of Supermen from the various DC Universes and time continuums take care of him because in Superman’s words, they are basically solar batteries, storing light in their cells….see, enough to make your head hurt.
I would like to say Morrison ties this all up neatly. That Final Crisis is in its way a final story. But no, there are lots and lots of stories left open and not closed. There were just too many little side tales to clean up. So he just didn’t. After all, he’s Grant Morrison and there comes a time in this business when your name is all you need.
What you needed Grant is an editor. One with the testes to say, whoa genius, dial it back some okay. But now that didn’t happen so here it is. Smaller cast and better storytelling would have done wonders for this one.
I’m sure Final Crisis was a great story in his head, it just didn’t make it to the page. I’m not sure it even came close.