Title: Heroes in Crisis.
Title: The Price and Other Tales
Writer(s): Joshua Williamson, Julie Benson, Shawna Benson, Collin Kelly & Jackson Lanzing.
Penciller(s): Guillem March, Rafa Sandoval, Jordi Tarragona, Scott Kolins & Javier Fernandez.
Colourist(s): Tomeu Morey, Luis Guerrero & John Kalisz.
Letterer(s): Steve Wands, Wes Abbott & Andworld Design.
Publisher: DC Comics.
Release Date: October 15th 2019.
Genre(s): Comics, Science-Fiction.
My Overall Rating: ★★★☆☆.
The ambitious and destructive nature of Tom King’s Heroes in Crisis event was a pleasant read that allowed some chaos to the ongoing status quo since the launch of the Rebirth universe over at DC Comics. While they sparingly explored the cause of the reboot throughout some of DC’s comic book series and is still covering it in the ongoing Doomsday Clock epic event, Heroes in Crisis was an entertaining story that covered heavy topics while also killing off some C-list superheroes. Unfortunately, with every event comes tie-ins that are usually subpar or irrelevant in the grander scheme of things. This time around, there were some interesting ideas that are explored but not sufficiently mind-blowing to make this an obligatory detour for fans of King’s latest controversial story arc.
What is Heroes in Crisis: The Price and Other Tales about? Collecting Batman issues #64-65, The Flash issues #64-65, Green Arrow issues #45 and #48-50, and The Flash Annual #2, this story arc is a tie-in collection of stories taking place during Tom King’s controversial Heroes in Crisis event. Split into two stories, the first brings Batman and The Flash to work together to solve a mystery surrounding the death of one of their comrades while their friendship now lies on fragile grounds, unable to establish the amount of trust they are willing to put into one another now that they’ve both recently lost someone dear to them. The second explores Green Arrow’s pitiful self-depreciation following his own loss after the terrible events at Sanctuary.
The odds that this collection could remotely surpass the main event in terms of quality were slim, to begin with. It would be quite stunning if it proved me wrong on that front. Where this volume could be relevant is if it succeeds in sharing stories that are akin to the main event’s message. Surprisingly, The Price story arc turned out to be a sequel to The Button crossover event and it isn’t bad, per se, but brought back some of Tom King’s creations that weren’t particularly memorable in my books (Gotham and Gotham Girl). However, it’s not only through the artwork that the story arc managed to be entertaining but also through the dynamic relationship between Batman and the Flash that allows us to understand their misperception of one another and how much struggle the latter has in trusting the former in his methods.
The second part of this volume looks into the Green Arrow’s recent loss during the major event that launches him on a furious outburst against all the heroes who couldn’t save the person in question, and against himself for not having given that character the time and attention that they required. The visual style for this arc is quite different but still pretty good, giving it the tone it needs to capture the burden on the character’s shoulders following his loss. It also ended up being a story arc that featured a villain who played with perception and that seemed like an excellent idea to play with to me, considering the main theme of grief and understanding that were explored.
While not necessarily essential to appreciate—or hate—Heroes in Crisis, this collection was still enjoyable for what it was. It is a bit odd that Batman, the Flash, and Green Arrow are basically extracted out from their respective ongoing series to go through this event but at least it wasn’t for something that most could agree on as a waste of time.
Heroes in Crisis: The Price and Other Tales is an entertaining tie-in collection examining the role of mentors of fallen heroes and their stance on promoting vigilantism among inspired youths.
Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for sending me a copy for review!