Monday, February 24, 2014

Time Travel Time #2: Justice League Flashpoint Paradox

I purchased another Justice League animated movie: "The Flashpoint Paradox", based on the popular 2011 DC storyline.

By title alone, it's not hard to decipher this one to be Flash-focused, but the plot also concerns time travel and the creation of a violent "Twilight Zone-ish" alternate reality.

The strange events commence when Barry Allen, still grieving his mother's death, is unnerved by a snide remark made on the matter by his adversary, Professor Zoom, after a thwarted plot to blow up Central City. The next day, Barry wakes to find his mother still alive (a glorious surprise, to say the least), but that he's unfortunately devoid of his speedy attributes. He also encounters Batman, who is ever more embittered and in this instance, not Bruce Wayne, but rather his father, Thomas. (Apparently, in this reality, young Bruce was the one killed on that dark, fateful night.) Most unsettling, Wonder Woman's Amazons are engaged in a full-scale war against Aquaman's Atlanteans: the repercussions of which could very well destroy the planet.

Amazingly enough, Barry is able to convince Thomas to help him reinstate the old reality, assuring him that Bruce was alive and well in the dimension from which he left. The question is: how exactly are they going to set things back on track? For that matter, how did these confusing circumstances manifest in the first place? It seems logical to assume that the crafty Professor Zoom traveled back in time and caused a Bradbury-like "Sound of Thunder" rift...or did he?

The ultimate answers arise through an ample amount of tension and intrigue, with variations of many of our favorite heroes and villains appearing throughout: Captain Atom, Captain Cold, Lex Luthor, Lois Lane...Superman, though in quite an unexpected and startling form.

Although several of the parallel personas are quite disturbing (Wonder Woman, particularly), I liked "Flashpoint" tremendously. It's fast-paced (as any Flash yarn should inherently be), intelligently adult-oriented and above all, effectively mind-warping. (It'll surely make a splendid addition to the recently released "Justice League War", which I also enthusiastically recommend.)

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