Writer: Greg Rucka
Artists: Jesus Saiz and Cliff Richards (p), Jesus Saiz and Bob Wiacek (i)
".Conclusion.Loss of Signal"
Publisher: DC Comics
Plot: Batman and Sasha come up with a plan to take down as many of the O.M.A.C.s that Brother Eye has unleashed on the world as they can. With the help of Hal Jordan and John Stewart they trap the O.M.A.C.s and succeed in taking a good deal of them out. Brother Eye doesn't take kindly to this defeat and unleashes yet another gambit to gain revenge for the death of Maxwell Lord.
Commentary: I never really liked the Supermen of America anyway.
I guess the surprise ending to this series would be the fact that it doesn't end terminally. I can't call it a happy ending, but this is the first "victory" that the heroes have had since Countdown.
While this wasn't the tense conclusion I was expecting, it was still a satisfying and exciting one. Finally, the heroes start working together and the results may not have been a slam dunk but they were successful. The scene with Batman and the Lanterns was solid and while Hal and Bruce still don't get along they can work together if need be. Despite the general mistrust among the heroic community they did come together, and I think this is a theme that will be carried over to Infinite Crisis.
The scene with Booster, Fire and Guy was also a solid one. Rucka is definitely setting something up with Booster. Maybe he will become the new Blue Beetle. It's a little too obvious, but that has never stopped comic book writers before. I really felt for Booster in this scene. Guy was absolutely right in telling him to sit this one out, but that doesn't make it any easier. It was also kind of neat to have someone finally acknowledge the fact that Booster is from the future and should have some knowledge of the past. Rucka gave any writer who handles the character from now on an out with Booster's lack of knowledge of the past he has traveled to.
The ending was deceptively happy. Batman again makes the mistake of thinking that he knows it all. The bait and switch with this issue was giving the audience the sense that the heroes were going to win while hitting us with that last page of Brother Eye broadcasting Wonder Woman killing of Maxwell Lord. The image of one of the greatest heroes on the planet killing a man seemingly in cold blood would have a ripple effect across the world, which would be this series' part in Infinite Crisis. The concept of the worst threat the universe has ever known happening at a time when the world doesn't trust the only people who can help them makes for some great dramatic possibilities.
In The End: While this didn't have the huge, epic ending I was expecting (especially after the events of Day of Vengeance), it still worked. Rucka has always gone against what I thought he was going to, but that makes for a better reading experience. There was a lot of heart in this series and Rucka pulled off the dramatic tension of Checkmate, Max Lord and Brother Eye masterfully. The art in this issue was incredible, especially the double page spread of the heroes fighting the O.M.A.C.s.
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