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Batman/The Flash: The Button Deluxe Edition Hardcover – October 17, 2017
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“Fabok's storytelling never falters.” —IGN
“The biggest mystery of DC’s Rebirth has finally begun in earnest.” —Io9
“It’s a damn fine superhero action adventure.” —Comic Book Resources
“Fabok hits every beat for making [THE BUTTON] an action-packed, mystery story.”—Newsarama
About the Author
Tom King is a comic book writer and novelist, best known for his work at DC Comics including BATMAN, GRAYSON and OMEGA MEN. He often relies on his experience as an ex-CIA agent and experiences during the recent conflicts in the Middle East in his writing, especially apparent in GRAYSON (alongside co-writer Tim Seeley), OMEGA MEN and in SHERIFF OF BABYLON, published under the Vertigo imprint.
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Story: There's actually not a lot going on here. I mean, it's action packed for sure, but there's a basic story here. It's not too in depth, although I'd be mistaken if I said it wasn't deep in its implications and consequences. Batman starts to work on the button, and contacts Barry to come over to the cave. Barry in the mean time is fighting some robot samurais. In the minute between Bruce telling Barry to come over and him arriving, Bruce is attacked by an apparently resurrected Eobard Thawne, and is savagely beaten. Batman does manage to get in a few good shots, but Thawne with his super speed and smart fighting prevails over Batman. He takes the button into his possession and disappears. He quickly reappears seconds later, but disintegrates! Barry arrives, gets Bruce wrapped up in bandages, and begins the investigation. After detecting some of the Speed Force on Thawne, Barry decides to trace the path that Thawne took to see what or who killed him. Barry goes up to the watchtower, takes the sheet off of the cosmic treadmill, and prepares to travel through the time stream. Bruce, in costume, follows Barry and insist on accompanying him. What transpires next is a journey to an alternate timeline that shouldn't exist any longer, seeing past histories of the DC Universe, meeting up with Thawne as he traveled through the Speed Force and trying to prevent his death, and seeing the death of Eobard Thawne by an unseen force. C'mon, we all know who it is! As Batman and Flash tumble through this time stream, someone calls out to Flash. Flash says the guy's name, and he bursts forth from his captivity in this place, and manages to get Batman and Flash back home. He is unfortunately pulled back, as Barry cannot remember him as he did Wally. Being back at the beginning and with no way to travel back into the time stream, Bruce and Barry talk about why they were allowed to see and experience all the things they did. The only lead they have now is that Thawne was killed by "God". Bruce, after his experiences starts to question whether he should be Batman any longer. In the place where the trail of the button ended, where the button sits on a rocky surface in space, where Thawne was killed, a glowing blue hand picks the button up and briefly talks about everyone being puppets of preordained actions. It's just that he's the only one who can see the strings. Counting down to Doomsday Clock!
Art: Jason Fabok never messes up anything. He's one of DC's top artists, as well as one of the best in the world. His art here is phenomenal, but I already knew it was going to be. Howard Porter is a comics legend and I think this might be my first book with him as a featured artist. He does a great job as well, and I can't wait to see him on the main Flash title. I really like the way Porter draws the after images or speed trails of the Flash in motion. It's quite nice. His art here did look a little "sketchy", but I'm not worried. This book is also colored very well. The issues drawn by Fabok tend to be darker in visual tone, but that's pretty appropriate for his style, and what he's drawing. A lot of the scenes he draws takes place in a Batcave, so expect it to be kinda dark. The issues done by Porter are brighter as he seems to be doing the cosmic and timestream scenes. Those are expected to be brighter, and the colors really pop out there. The covers by Jason Fabok are amazing, as well as the variants by Mikel Janin. I think Janin might go down as one of my favorite artists in the near future. I'm waiting for "The War of Jokes and Riddles" to come out. The variants by Tim Sale only show that he's a shadow of his former self. I mean, the guy just isn't what he used to be! His variants look like a 5 year old's drawings that mommy puts up on the refrigerator.
Overall: In a sense, this is a murder mystery that still leaves our heroes perplexed by the end. Even though they're brought back to the beginning, with the only lead being that it was "God", there are still some lasting consequences. Bruce is now struggling with the advice he received on finding happiness and whether to continue being Batman or not. Barry wonders who the stranger that saved them is. This was a cool, action packed story. It's easy to follow. I'm giving it five stars. The story itself would only garner 4 stars from me because of its simplicity and I felt that not enough was moved forward. But, the fantastic art raises the rating up for me to a full 5 stars. This is definitely worth reading. It's beautiful to look at as well. I'm looking forward to seeing the aftermath of what happened to Bruce and Barry. I can't wait for Doomsday Clock!
I'm sure Alan Moore is furious and let him be, the guys stories have transcended beyond him as a person and exist as their own amazing entities.
Buy this book if not for a fun Flash/Batman team-up. Two detectives solving a universal mystery. Thats what comics are all about.
As I mentioned, everyone involved in creating this crossover is in top form and it’s clearly evident that extra time was taken in these four issues. The art by Jason Fabok is some of the best I have ever seen by any DC artist. The writing by Tom King and Joshua Williamson is fantastic and it’s easy to see Geoff Johns influence. From the brief appearance by Saturn Girl in the first issue to the final meeting between Flashpoint Thomas Wayne and Bruce Wayne, the writing knocks it out of the park. In fact, Thomas Wayne makes an emotional plea to Bruce that is one of the most powerful moments I have ever read in any DC comic.
The Button was only four issues so DC uses a very heavy paper stock to give the book some heft. We’ve known for awhile now that the 12 part mini series Doomsday Clock, written by Geoff Johns, will be the true continuation of the Rebirth storyline. The Button was just an appetizer or perhaps just a way for DC to say, ‘yeah, we haven’t forgotten about Dr. Manhattan causing the Rebirth’. Whatever the reason for its existence The Button has some five star moments that rank up there with some of the best moments in DC history. I wouldn’t have bought the deluxe edition if I didn’t enjoy the comics.