Flashpoint: Legion of Doom #2 Review

Well, Flashpoint: Legion of Doom #2 was certainly something. If you like prison break stories, you’ll probably enjoy it, because it doesn’t disappoint in that respect. However if you dislike blood and violence in your comics, you won’t be thrilled with this one at all. More after the cut.

To give an idea of what this issue is like, I’ll list some of the gruesome acts in it, not even counting minor incidents like Heat Wave getting stabbed or shoved face-first into a wall. Heat Wave kills Zsasz by lighting his head on fire, bites off Animal Man’s nose and then bloodily curbstomps him, pops the Atom’s head like a grape (shown in graphic fashion), and then burns at least six guards to death before plotting to crash the airborne prison into downtown Detroit. This is not a comic for the weak of heart or faint of stomach, and in fact I saw quite a few people at 4chan express displeasure with the violence in this issue. Let’s say that again: people at 4chan thought the blood and violence here were excessive. No one disputes that prisons are harsh and nasty places, but I’m not sure I want to read about stuff like this in DC comics. I was actually okay with the vicious fight and nose-biting in the scene with Animal Man, but then really taken aback when Mick curbstomped him (complete with gushing blood and SPLATT sound effect).

So I’m not going to lie: I didn’t enjoy this issue because of the relentless violence. There are some positive aspects; the story is certainly fast-paced and exciting and evil Plastic Man is fun, probably the best character in the book. He clearly has a bond with Heat Wave even if they’re kind of jerks to each other occasionally, and I’d like to know more about their history. I’d also like to know what made Mick such a psychopath in the Flashpoint world. But the graphic killings keep coming in the story, and the reader can’t avoid it even if he or she wants to. It really deserves a more mature rating, and is not recommended unless you enjoy this type of gore.

Flashpoint: Legion of Doom #2
Story by Adam Glass
Art by Rodney Buchemi

23 thoughts on “Flashpoint: Legion of Doom #2 Review

  1. Ken O

    This book was brutal. After the first issue I was prepped for it though. I actually enjoyed it, but yeah, it certainly doesn’t hold anything back.

    Reply
  2. Kelson

    Right there with you on this one, Lia. I put off reading this book for several days, and when I finally did, I needed a mental palate cleanser afterward.

    Reply
  3. Will McKay

    Lia-

    I definitely can’t fault you for not liking this issue because of its brutality. Even I was taken aback slightly by the gruesomeness. The violence wasn’t so much gratuitous as it was realistic. Still, that being said, you got to admit that you must be a little curious about how this story is going to play out in the last issue. The final page was one hell of a cliffhanger.

    At least you didn’t whine about how certain supposedly ‘iconic,’ heroes were treated in this series. I once made the stupid mistake of buying one of Animal Man’s collected trades because it was written by you know who. Typical liberal nonsense with the hero running around saving dolphins. Thanks to Heat Wave, Animal Boy got a punishment that I deemed fitting for the 20 bucks that I’ll never get back.

    Reply
    1. Saki

      Fortunately, that liberal nonsense will always outsell this tripe.

      The only thing that peaked my interest was Plastic man. That’s about it…

      Reply
      1. Will McKay

        Don’t be so sure. Animal Man’s crappy comic was a long time ago. Like Aqua Man, the issues that boringly focused on ocean pollution, name me one comic with a liberal side to it and I’ll show you a canceled series.

        Reply
        1. Saki

          Oh, boy. Quit it already. I love the way the western civilization destroyed the fundamental aspects our politics tried to introduce and you bring the word Liberal as if it actually means something to the environment.

          Politics is much like religion. It overcomplicated itself along the way and the reality behind it is it’s The wealthy vs the un-wealthy. You can be part of any “party” and still be “green”.

          As for Animal man…Two words; Jeff Lemire

          Reply
    2. Lia Post author

      Heh, I love Morrison’s Animal Man, it’s actually the only series of his that I like (it helps that I was raised in a liberal vegetarian household 😉 ). I don’t mind how Animal Man is treated here because it’s an alternate universe and the deaths will be undone anyway — my complaint about how Golden Glider was treated has more to do with the way Johns and Kolins have written her for the past decade, rather than Flashpoint per se.

      I am curious about how the story ends, but no doubt it’ll be bloody. Maybe Heat Wave will end up dead — again, it doesn’t matter because they’ll all be reversed afterwards anyway. He kind of has it coming, at any rate.

      Reply
      1. Saki

        Lia

        I don’t mind that they killed off Animal Man, either. I just don’t think they took into account that in September, Buddy will have his own series again. And seeing him get killed in such a manner will not help his series commercially at all.

        I speak largely of those reading Flashpoint that have never read Animal man.

        In Grant Morrison’s run, Buddy regenerated his arm after having it severed by a Humanoid rat creature and in Flashpoint he just gave up so quickly. And later on in the series he killed off the people responsible for his family’s murder. I saw none of that in Flashpoint.

        It’s no wonder the issue was universally panned. Don’t get me wrong, I like Adam Glass, but I didn’t like this issue at all.

        All that aside, glad to hear your vegetarian. So am I. 🙂

        Reply
        1. Will McKay

          If you don’t care how he was portrayed in this series, then it shouldn’t bother you at all about his new upcoming comic. Either way it is going to bomb and get canceled. Buddy couldn’t save a series even if he called himself the Punisher and started executing every animal in the zoo.

          Reply
          1. Lia Post author

            Well, keep in mind the original Animal Man series had 89 issues. That isn’t to say this one won’t bomb (I bet a lot of them will), but it’s not like Buddy hasn’t carried a series before.

            Reply
          2. Saki

            Well, I’m glad you seem to think that Animal man bombed because it was quite the reverse. The series was supposed to be a mediocre revamp to test Grant Morrison’s writing skills, and boy did it more than live up to expectations.

            89 issues, that’s arguably half of the critically acclaimed Swamp thing and more than Neil Gaimen’s Sandman.

            Will,

            The environment and politics , I believe that these elements can sometimes enhance a comic book character like Green Arrow and Animal man. It’s prevents them from being cardboard cut outs like the rest of the mainstream heroes.

            If you want fictional characters to ignore these elements then I suggest you read Archie or Peanuts.

            Reply
        2. Lia Post author

          I’d imagine LoD won’t really be on the mental registers of people reading the Lemire series in September, so it’s probably not a big deal. LoD readers and Lemire readers are likely different audiences.

          It’s also entirely possible that his powers are somewhat different between the Flashpoint world and DCU — or, more likely, he has different levels of experience using them. It’s a hand-wavey explantion for the discrepanacies, but it works 😉

          That’s groovy! Yeah, my parents raised my sister and I that way because my mom’s been involved with animal rights/welfare since likely before anyone here was born (my family would drive you nuts, Will 🙂 ). I recommended Morrison’s Animal Man series to her for that reason, but she’s not a comics reader unfortunately.

          Reply
          1. Will McKay

            I might be wrong, but I think Animal Man regenerated his arm by calling on the power of the earth worm.

            Sacky-

            Only if Jughead starts carrying a can of gasoline around and starts burning everybody.

            Lia-

            I’m unfamiliar with Lemire. Is he supposed to be pretty good? You are right about the original series having a pretty long run. Still, I think Morrison had that magic touch. Time will tell I suppose.

            Reply
    3. papa zero

      I celebrate the fact that comic books serve your need for wish fulfillment. Talk politics somewhere else.

      Reply
      1. Will McKay

        Gee, sorry dad. Didn’t mean to hog up space since you’ve really contributed so much of a post review to this issue.

        Reply
  4. Rich T

    When I read this comic, it is not just violent it is sadistic. Heat Wave takes a kind of glee in the violence that just rubs me the wrong way. He is rewarded in the way he does these things. I know it is hard to write a comic from the villains point of view, but this just went over the line for what I like to read.

    Reply
  5. kyer

    This is why I don’t trust ratings and dislike violence….because look at it….LOOK AT IT. It’s like the cities where the law breaks down and suddenly ‘nice’ people are breaking into stores and laughing as they steal others property. You take away the inhibitions and some people run amok….they show that the only restraint they ever had WAS because of the law.

    Worse and worse..having gotten a taste then the next writer given cart blanche will feel they must go farther. Never mind that continuous exposure to this rot makes you more immune to it in real life. If it didn’t, companies wouldn’t pay millions for advertisements.

    I will never read anything from this author or drawn or colored by the artists. They’ve proven they are more than willing to go beyond the pail.

    This is also why churches were so adamant against comic books. I tell you…this book did the comic book community absolutely no favors!

    Reply
  6. Lia Post author

    Will, I’ve not read anything by Lemire (though I should get around to reading his Essex County, since it takes place only a couple of hours from here), but from what I hear he’s supposed to be pretty good. He’s got a very gritty art style.

    Morrison only wrote the first 26 issues or so of Animal Man, and I didn’t really like the book after he left. More horror and surrealism than I prefer. But it seems to have been popular anyway.

    Reply
  7. headrush71

    I made the mistake of reading this issue after having watched The Devil’s Double (a fantastic but sometimes brutal movie) and ep 5 (?) of Game of Thrones (the horse-chopping ep). By the time I read this, I was pretty much gored out. Ugh. Although Dark Plas is cool. Wouldn’t mind seeing him in mainstream DC.

    Reply

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