Heroes in Crisis #9 wraps up what has been a mess of a miniseries. It never quite nailed down what it wanted to be and took too many side tours that didn’t focus on what was promised. Beyond the controversial reveal of who caused the deaths at Sanctuary, it’s also a series that seemed to have gone over too many people’s heads.
At its heart, what Heroes in Crisis was supposed to be was a focus on the trauma heroes experience and the impact. In the real world, soldiers, police, first responders, so many are impacted negatively from the good they do. The results can be PTSD, outbursts, and worse, and this series attempted to look at that. Though these heroes may seem calm on the outside, inside they’re struggling. Writer Tom King wanted to explore that and in some ways he did and in other ways he didn’t.
The event turned into a “whodunnit” as other heroes put the puzzle pieces together and suspects ran. Threads involving Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and the Flash were left dangling or not needed while latter issues congealed around a tight knit group of characters.
Then there’s the murder, Wally West.
West is one of the characters who represents “hope” in the DC Universe. His return in DC Rebirth represented the positive nature of heroes and slowly over time we’ve seen him realized the sacrifice he’s made. He discovered his family was taken away from him. He discovered his memories were taken away from him. And eventually he lost control resulting in the deaths of Sanctuary.
In Heroes in Crisis #9, King explores that hope. It’s talked about and danced around in some ways but that seems to be the point he’s making. Though some of those good heroes may eventually do damage, don’t give up on the hope. You need to keep on doing good yourself. That seems to be the point. You recognize the heavy nature of the positive you’re doing. You recognize the trauma. And you still try to do good and you move forward. That’s the conclusion King comes to.
The art by Clay Mann with color by Tomeu Morey is fantastic as expected. There’s some truly breathtaking spreads and pages. Mann has an amazing eye for dynamic positions of characters in panels with intriguing and eye catching perspectives. Morey’s colors make it all pop. Clayton Cowles‘ lettering too catches the mood and inflection as the story moves along. So much of the emotion is driven by a simple change in font and placement of dialogue or boxes.
Heroes in Crisis wasn’t perfect. There were massive issues that some editing and better focus would have corrected. Tom King explored a topic that was far overdue and one the public largely ignores. It did, with issues, what entertainment is supposed to, use allegory to explore our condition and world.
Story: Tom King Art: Clay Mann
Color: Tomeu Morey Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 7.0 Art: 8.65 Overall: 7.15 Recommendation: Read
DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review