writers: Azzarello, Lemire, Jurgens, Giffen / penciller: Scott Eaton
In Future’s End #29, I particularly enjoyed the internal monologue of Dick Grayson. Perhaps the most private and mysterious character of the series so far, we were finally provided with an opportunity to see what he’s been thinking all this time. His well-paced monologues during combat scenes hinted of a “Dark Knight Returns” influence. We also learn that he’s heavy with guilt from his past losses and does all he can to prevent anymore, which leads to his team-up with Ronnie Raymond.
This isn’t the first team-up that came to mind in the character-filled series, but it was impressive to see in action nonetheless. It was even more amusing to see Ronnie be clueless as to why this bartender he met knew Krav Maga.
The cover, showing a woman engulfed in flames and flying in mid-air was a great draw. I had an idea of how the story would get to this point and was actually rather disappointed that I hadn’t figured it out earlier. But I suppose that’s actually a result of good writing that didn’t allow me to hone in. But I will say that the dismissal of one character and the birth of another was carried out well.
It’s still unclear exactly what intelligence level the writers of DC’s “Future’s End” think their audience claims. In past issues, they challenged readers to juggle multiple plots which, at that time, had almost nothing to do with each other. But in this issue they seemed to head towards the opposite direction and over-explain.
The moment where this was the most obvious was when Jason Rusch, one half of Firestorm, stole an authorization card from a Cadmus security guard and we’re actually given a red square placed over his hand as he grabs it as to say “Look at what he’s doing!”
Maybe I expect too much from my fellow readers and the creative team knows something that I don’t. But I feel like that insults my ability to follow a story. While over-stating the obvious didn’t work in this case, I would argue that it worked in others.
Future’s End #29 was a solid turning point for both the Firestorm and Dick Grayson storylines, which meshed together better than expected. We finally saw a bromance rekindled as a result of the characters maturing emotionally. The issue left with an appropriate amount of closure yet left you with enough questions to pick up the next copy. However, the underestimation on behalf of the creative staff makes me feel that they haven’t quite figured out their voice.