4 out of 5
This is a lot of comic for a very reasonable price: $20 collects the 7 Final Crisis issues, the Submit one-shot, the two part Superman Beyond, the tied-in final two issues of Grant’s Batman run (682 and 683), and relevant pages from the DC Universe 0 issue. Excluding that last bit – that’s 12 issues, for a trade price that’s normally used for 6 or 8 issues. I’d also commend those in-the-know who put this thing together specifically for types like me: who only really cared about reading Grant Morrison’s contributions to the event – all collected here – and not so much the other tie-ins by other authors. That’s awfully convenient for we types.
The trade dress, all done up in the title’s blacks and reds, is handsome, matching the general typography and look of the inner credits page. Robbie Biederman is credited with publication design.
I have my nits, of course: there’s no table of contents, and no page numbers, and while the main covers are used as issue breaks (with full credits on the reverse of each cover), it kind of irked me that they didn’t list what specific issue we’re reading. And while this could just be my copy, the glue on the binding gave way within, like, a chapter. All of the pages stayed in, just the cover is loose. I’d chalk it up to a one-off, except I’ve had similar issues with DC books of this era, and while I’m not cracking the spine open, the book does ask for it – some dialogue is printed right into the gutter. The tradeoff to that, though, is that the book is weighted well, and ‘feels’ good – pages and covers flip easily; you can hold the book with one hand.
Bonuses amount to some alternate covers, and a foreword.