Future State has begun but does it live up to the hype? Read below to see what we thought of week 1.
Find out how we have got here to (Future State) by reading Dark Nights: Death Metal issue 7 or click here to check out our review.
FUTURE STATE: SUPERMAN OF METROPOLOIS
There’s a new Superman in town and his name is Jon Kent! For the past decade our young Superboy has been passed the mantle of his father; after what we can only assume was a falling out with Earth. DC Future State leaves us with a lot of questions to be answered. But this 1st issue has shown us Metropolis is a whole world of trouble, almost becoming compared to Gotham’s current military state currently in. (Read below that story)
Jon Kent is working with Kara Zor-El protecting their city and they have already protected it forms a number of bad days. This one is no different the situation grows worse as a piece of Brainiac calling itself Brain Cell has created a way to make people more machine-like with the help of nanites. Which enables Brain Cell to control anyone with them in their system. And this has brought much strife to the once-great city of tomorrow.
Now to the main plot, Jon is doing his best to protect the city from not only Brain Cell but the government as well. Jon’s idea to best protect his city is to do something drastic. And he then bottles Metropolis like Brainiac has attempted to do so many times. His cousin is not too happy about this plan and it doesn’t help that Brain Cell is prepared to counter her strength as well. At this point, we see that poor Jon fell right into Brain Cell’s plans and makes his escape with the city of Metropolis. And once again it’s time for Superman to save his city!
Thus far the story has some weight to it. I love seeing that Jon has taken on the role of his father. But with the Superman of Metropolis title only slated for 2 issues. I’m hoping that the next issue has a strong finish to it. Another highlight of this book is actually the side stories that take place during this event. Mister Miracle and Guardian are in the shrunken city of Metropolis attempting to keep the peace as best as they can but their no Supermen. And the clocks ticking on these two fast. All and all it’s a good first issue. Was just looking for a bit more story for Jon in this issue. – Ed
Future State: Next Batman
The Next Batman story is written by acclaimed writer John Ridley, known most notably for writing the screenplay 12 Years a Slave and drawn by the amazingly talented Nick Derington known for his recent work on Batman Universe. The start to this series is really surprising because from the jump we get the traditional scene of Batman taking down a thug but what we don’t yet know is that it’s not Bruce Wayne!! I know shocker right! Who would’ve thought that in a title called the “NEXT Batman” wouldn’t be Bruce under the cowl?
That being said, it was very refreshing to jump into a Batman story not really knowing what to expect. This issue does an admirable job of balancing takes on New Characters, New Villains, and Heroes without giving you the full backstory. In short what John Ridley is able to do with this story is give you just enough to keep you wanting to come back for more, coupled with the magical artistry from Nick Derington and you have yourself a recipe for a very good Batman book that could one day be considered a classic.
This story centers in a new Gotham City Governed by the Magistrate. In Gotham all people in masks have been deemed dangerous and as such the Magistrates private security patrols the city with a shoot on sight order for all “masks” and number 1 on that kill list is Batman. This law puts Batman at odds with the Magistrate and the criminals but also puts the police in an uncomfortable situation, stuck in the middle. Batman, no longer Bruce Wayne for reasons unknown as of yet, has to fight a battle on 3 fronts.
He has to find a way to take crime off the streets while also not getting killed by the Police who, again, have a shoot on sight order for ANYONE in a mask also he has to keep the criminals from getting killed since they also tend to wear masks. Batman’s war on crime gets a lot more complicated with the introduction of the local gang the “Bane-Litos” modeled after, you guessed it, Bane.
This gang, like most gangs, uses the tactic of “no one cares about you” in order to seduce new blood into joining their “familia”. We also get introduced to a new character Tim “Jace” Fox, brother of Luke Fox, son of Lucius Fox and apparently the Black Sheep of the family. We meet Tim when Luke goes to see his sister, Tam, who has been hospitalized for quite some time due to a yet to be explained incident involving “the masks”.
This is only the first part of a much larger four part story so clearly there is a lot more to explore here. We still don’t know what has happened to Bruce Wayne, what incident turned the city against people with masks, the identity of the Magistrate or even the Identity of the titular character the Future State Next Batman. That being said this was a really good start to what may well prove to be a seminal Batman story in the not so far future. – Miguel
Future State: Swamp Thing
The green is thriving on Earth. You can see it’s reach on many of the great monuments of the world. And in the distance, you can see our Swamp Thing recounting a tale of the past to a young child. And this child is like Swamp Thing; a sentient being of the green. Not just her but a tribe full of avatars of the green. But they’re on a mission to find what’s left of the human race.
It’s hard to say how long it’s been since the events of Death Metal but Swamp Thing is no longer the only entity of the green he has a tribe, but he is tasking them with assisting him with finding more humans. So we can only assume there was a slight catastrophe at some point that wiped out a chunk of the human race. We come to see there are some living up in the cold North whether it was to escape the green or that’s just where they needed to go we will hopefully learn more. Not before though our hero attempts to liberate the remaining humans from the clutches of his archnemesis the Floronic Man.
I’m already enjoying the path set by our writer Ram V. This post-apocalyptic setting is perfect for Swamp Thing. His character has continually fought an uphill battle in protecting the green from humankind and now he searches for them, the irony is apparent! lol. This is one of the stories I’m enjoying much more than expected. And would have loved to see this span into a 4 issue run but I think this short story will have a great impact on the upcoming stories. Well done on this title. – Ed
Future State: Harley Quinn
I will say writer Stephanie Phillips and artist Simone Dimeo definitely made something fun with this book. If you like any “How to catch a killer” tv drama. This is a book for you! Harley is dealing with the same trials the other Gotham heroes are currently facing against the magistrate. The only difference she didn’t last very long.
A reformed Jonathan Crane AKA Scarecrow has now joined sides with the Magistrate of Gotham and has embarked on capturing as many super villains as possible that are still on the loose. While some were simple enough to catch some are much more elusive such as Black Mask who in turn becomes the main protagonist of this tale.
Now it’s a bit of a mixture of a Suicide Squad scenario. Imprisoned Harley with her assistance in apprehending other criminals like Professor Pyg and Firefly. She gains more favorable conditions during her incarceration. But as we know Black Mask will be no easy task and Crane has already failed multiple times. So im interested to see where this crime drama goes. With beautiful illustrations and fun storyline this Future State title can appeal to even the most candid reader. Plus if your a Harley fan theres plenty of funny banter to go around. – Ed
FUTURE STATE: The Flash
This story feels like DC Comics accidentally printed one of their Dark Multiverse stories as Future State. Written by Brandon Vietti with Art by Dale Eaglesham, this “Futuristic” tale of the Flash family has a good premise and really good artwork but falls a bit short for me in the pacing. For a series that will only be 2 issues Flash left us with more questions than answers and might be hard-pressed to answer them all in the 32 pages of issue #2.
Also if you thought the days of Wally West being the bad guy were behind us I’m sorry to tell you that is not necessarily the case and while we don’t yet know what happened to lead our precious Wally down this perilous path I do feel like Vietti could’ve done a bit more to flesh out how we got to a possessed Wally and depowered Flash Family. The overall story is solid and I really do believe that the writing team can give us a satisfying conclusion I was just left wanting a bit more from the elements of the story that were glossed over.
The issue opens up with the Flash Family of Barry Allen, Jay Garrick, Max Mercury, Avery Ho, and Bart Allen breaking into Checkmate Castle to take down the Thinker (secretly the Calculator) but the twist is that the Flash Family are powerless. With no connection to the Speed Force the Flash Family resorts to using the very weapons created by their Rogues Gallery. Unfortunately, as our heroes take down The Calculator we notice that without their speed they’re much more susceptible to their mistakes and Bart Allen is the first casualty as he can’t move out of the way of a blast quick enough and is killed.
We learn, through Flashbacks, that Wally has been possessed for 5 years and in that time he’s been running the globe on a killing spree. He’s killed the Global Guardians, attacked Khandaq and even attacked the Titans Academy and killed Kid Flash Wallace West. Barry convinces team Flash that Wally can still be saved and they agree to follow his lead. Using the technology from the Thinking Cap Barry creates one for each member of team Flash as his plan is to try to reach Wally on the psychic plane and save him from whatever has a hold on him.
They meet Wally on the psychic plane and it all goes horribly wrong, we find that the horseman of the apocalypse, Famine, is possessing Wally and in that split second realization, Wally kills Jay Garrick. The issue ends with Barry deciding that Wally can’t be saved and now he will give in to the dark side of Science to find how to kill a speedster, he’s got to kill Wally!
As I said earlier in the review this story has a solid premise I just think they tried to over achieve and in doing so rushed through key elements of the backstory. I’m interested in seeing how they plan to close this story out and so I’ll be picking up issue #2. Overall the story succeeded I just hope Brandon Vietti can stick the landing.
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