Written by: Joshua Williamson
Art by: Tyler Kirkham & Mikel Janin
Colors by: Arif Prianto & Jeromy Cox
Letters by: Jimmy Betancourt
“Bats out of Hell Finale”
The League is battered and broken. As the Batman who Laughs and the rest of the Dark Knights parade the League to the Tuning Fork, Cyborg turns inward. He is being flooded with images of ways in which he will lose if he continues to fight, but among the visions, Victor continues to hold onto visions of himself watching game reels as he prepares a strategy. That’s when the Mother Box that he has been connected to for all these years decides that he’s ready to learn more. The Mother Box is prepared to give Vic the power he needs to defeat the Dark Knights. The only thing it requires is for the hero to allow it to erase who he is and replace it with a new form.
In order to convince Cyborg to comply, the mother box shows him the consequences to the multiverse if he fails. As he contemplates his decision, another voice chimes in imploring him to keep fighting. Victor finally makes a decision and his decision allows him to free the League and take on the Dark Knights. As the two teams fight, Victor frees additional heroes to help him in the fight, but there is one person that he absolutely has to free; Raven. As Victor shows his team the events that led to the creation of the Dark Knights, they find a way to escape. But is their escape and renewed hope justified, or is it another trick by Barbatos to bring them to the brink of hope just to strip them of it later?
I love the uncertainty of this issue. There are moments that remind the reader why the Justice League endures even in the darkest of circumstances and the callbacks to other DC Comics stories are fun Easter eggs that are sewn into this narrative really well by Williamson and the artists. The art is amazing and dynamic with some great action panels and some menacing close-ups of the villains. This is a worthwhile finale for this part of Metal and I look forward to seeing what happens next.