Does anyone want my issues of Futures End? I have the entire series. They are well-read and kind of worn from the many hours I’ve spent flipping back and forth between issues, looking for plot points, digging for clues, hoping for something good. Why am I ditching my issues? Because the whole thing, in my mind, was a complete and total waste.
I realize the “story” told during the past 50 weeks was never intended to come to completion with this last issue, but I wanted something. What I got –what we got– was nothing substantial. Constantly, we were given tidbits of information throughout the series. A promise of something more to happen. Just hold on. It’s around the corner. It’s a slow build. Look, they’re building backstory and character, giving motivations. Ah, here’s someone we haven’t seen yet. Oh look, that is something I don’t understand, but maybe next issue? No. The promise of a “futures end” was empty, at least in these pages.
Let me get this issue out of the way. Tim is back in the time of Terry (35 years from our future) and Brother Eye is still just as he was in #0. Tim is standing next to Mister Terrific inside Terrifitech when an older Palmer and Madison bust in and save them from some attacking Brother Eye zombies. Tim kisses a 60(?) year old Madison. Palmer shows off his underground travel system to avoid Brother Eye detection. Tim vows to take down Brother Eye. The end.
How did we come to this spot after 48 issues of narrative? We’re literally at the same place we were in issue #0, with the exception of Tim being Batman Beyond and not Terry. And really, that’s just one small step forward rather than a change. I feel hoodwinked. On the one hand you can say, “Oh yes Jesse, but the story will end in Convergence and all this will be relevant.” It should be relevant unto itself! I shouldn’t have to watch the first movie of a trilogy and have it consist of “getting me prepared for the second one”. The trailer to the first movie would never say, “Listen, just stick with this because all this might matter in the second and third movie.” I should watch that first movie and think, “Wow! There’s so much good stuff going on here and because of that fact and that fact alone I want to see more!” I emphatically disagree with this series. Nothing mattered.
Forget the time travel logic: it’s a comic. Forget following one single story line to a remotely satisfying conclusion: you’ll find out what happens next year. Forget having actual tension: they’ll rely on withholding information to keep you interested. Forget character development, real motives, or understanding how to craft a coherent and memorable (or even bearable) story: this is Futures End after all.
There were some things about this series I enjoyed. Palmer had some decent character development, as did Frankenstein and to some extent, Amethyst. I was intrigued by the separation between Bruce and Clark, but that was fruitless in these pages. For two seconds I thought Green Arrow’s faked death and secret island was cool. Grifter looked promising at first, and then went sterile. See, even as I list the things I enjoyed, all the weaknesses of the series start dragging them down.
Here’s you some inspirational quotes about bad comics:
- “Give me a good story or give me death.” -Patrick Henry
- “What’s character development got to do with it?” -Tina Turner
- “You either die a good series, or you live long enough to see yourself rebooted.” -Harvey Dent
- “It’s not what we are underneath, but what we write and draw that keeps readers interested.” -Rachel Dawes
- “Four score and seven years ago, our publisher started an underwhelming series entitled Futures End.” –Abraham Lincoln
- “Roads? Where we’re going we don’t need roads. Or substance. Or a good reason for existence. Or conclusions in story telling. Or story telling. Or a story, even if it’s not told.” -Doc Brown
- “Not anything good. Not yet.” -Bruce Wayne.
- “Frankly, my frustrated comic book readers, we don’t give a damn.” -Rhett “DC” Butler
- You want to have the very last issue of a series that’s ending but not really ending so you can pick up another weekly comic that, this time, is sure to absolutely change everything.
- You somehow believe some type of conclusive ending can be found in #48 and you won’t believe me and you have to find out for yourself.
- You’ve enjoyed the series as a whole. You’re comfortable in your own skin, and are truly excited for Convergence and how Brother Eye will alter the future of DC. If this is you, more power to ya.
As a final issue, it does what it was meant to do: make you spend money. The entire 49 issue series is/was a setup for something else. For me, I wish it was actually good in and of itself, but it’s not. A prequel for what will come doesn’t have to be disjointed and unsatisfying. It can lead readers to the next big event or story and still make them feel like what happened actually mattered. For me, it was a huge waste.