In this story two men die while one out runs a tidal wave. One death is noble and perhaps meaningful. The other is noble and pointless. And the tidal wave is not much connected to anything.

In this issue, the characters of Earth 2: World’s End struggle up from the nadir of the last segment to roar against their fate.  The poem tells us to “rage, rage against the dying of the light.”  Well, the people of Earth 2 rage aplenty, here.  It isn’t very well-written, and one doubts it will cohere into an understandable whole.  Perhaps the death of worlds isn’t supposed to be understandable or coherent.  But stories, post-modernist theories notwithstanding, should be both.

In this issue the essential futility of the avatars of Earth becomes clear as the Lovecraftian avatar of the Blue falls with one shot, while the avatar of the Red, revealed to be Yolanda Montez, has become a servant of Apokalips.  The first is silly, given the build-up the blue avatar received only a few issues ago.  The second makes no sense at all, given that Yolanda has never been properly introduced into the New 52.

Meanwhile, Yolanda’s traditional godfather, Ted Grant, is the man who out runs the tidal wave, carrying a comatose Dick Grayson on his shoulder.  Amir Khan, leader of the World Army, falls in a futile attempt to attack Darkseid.  And the Earth 2 Atom gives up is life in a noble gesture to prepare a place of refuge for the masses of the dying world.

The last provides some redemption for title badly in need of it.  If ever there was a comic that illustrated the filth and banality of evil, this is it.  If ever there was a story about the wretchedness of defeat and destruction, this fits the description.

But it is hard to see that the disjointed storytelling is leading anywhere save, as solicits have warned us, defeat.  In my last review, I said that realism is sometimes the greatest sin of comic books.  I will retract that statement.  Realism, on second thought, often works very well indeed in comics.  It is boredom that kills.  Dull stories, whether real or fake, cannot be redeemed by powerful art, and still less by the kind of mixed, disjointed art used in World’s End, where each issue is tortured by numerous writers, pencillers, and inkers.

Yes, the Atom gives up his life to save the people of this world.  But will it matter?  Does it connect to anything in this story or beyond it?  That isn’t clear, and thus it is hard to care.  Ted Grant seizes Dick Grayson and out runs a tidal wave in a feat of great prowess and heroism.  But does it matter?  Why should we care if these two live or die?  Even if we care, does the story care?

And that is the perhaps the most fitting epitaph for this narrative.  A world died here.  You probably shouldn’t worry about it.




This isn't a sad, tiresome issue like the last. It even has glimmers of heroism and nobility. But if not sad and tired, it may well be futile.