24 February 2016

Faster than a DC Bullet: Project Crisis!, Part XLIV: Final Crisis Companion

Comic trade paperback, n.pag.
Published 2009 (contents: 2008-09) 

Borrowed from the library
Read June 2015
Final Crisis Companion

Writers: Grant Morrison, Len Wein, Peter J. Tomasi, Greg Rucka, Eric Trautmann
Artists: J. G. Jones, Tony Shasteen, Doug Mahnke, Christian Alamy, Rodney Ramos, Ryan Sook, Marco Rudy
Colorists: Alex Bleyaert, Nei Ruffino, Jeromy Cox
Letterers: Rob Leigh, John J. Hill

Like the Infinite Crisis Companion before it, the Final Crisis Companion collects a number of stories taking place during its mother title. It also includes the Final Crisis #1 "Director's Cut," the uncolored and unlettered art of issue #1 of Final Crisis, along with some commentary from Grant Morrison and J. G. Jones. This is also collected in the back of Absolute Final Crisis, where it comes across as a nice extra: here it's more like padding, trying to get this thin volume up to a marketable length.

Other than that, this contains three stories set during Final Crisis. "Requiem" overlaps with issues #1 and 2, and is about the effects of the death of the Martian Manhunter, with five heroes telepathically hearing his death cries. I remembered absolutely nothing about it when I went to write this review, so I think we can safely assume the story did nothing of interest.

"Resist" is set in the month-long gap between issues #3 and 4, chronicling what Checkmate is doing to fight back against Darkseid. Snapper Carr is in it as a teleporting Checkmate agent, drawing on both Invasion! and The Four Horsemen; for some reason, he ends up having sex with the Wonder Woman villain Cheetah. This is the only thing I remember. Greg Rucka's work with Checkmate in the Infinite Crisis tie-ins was much more interesting.

And then there's "Balancing Act!," which explains how minor villain Libra became an agent of Darkseid and also what he has to do with Starman. Like a lot of these kinds of stories, it answers questions no one was asking, and it seems to exist solely to give writer Len Wein something to compensate him for creating Libra (used heavily by Morrison in the main Final Crisis book) in the first place.

I suggested that the Infinite Crisis Companion stories could have been included in their mother book to answer some outstanding questions left by the main narrative; I have almost the exact opposite recommendation for the Final Crisis Companion. Had these stories gone uncollected, I don't think anyone would have noticed at all.

Next Week: At the same time as this but in the future, it's time for the meeting of the Legion of 3 Worlds!

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