REVIEW: Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox

Title: Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox

Release Date; 2013

Warner Brothers Animation / DC Universe Animation

Based On DC Comics “Flashpoint” storyline in 2011

If there is one thing DC does-it’s major events. Stemming after events like “Blackest Night” and “Brightest Day”, “Final Crisis”-it was time for DC to do something HUGE. That event was 2011’s “Flashpoint”.

What “Flashpoint” did for DC Comics-was set the stage for them to reboot the universe, The New 52. Say what you will about New 52, but its been a roaring success. The event that launched it into existence-was also a huge success. So DC decided to take that story line-and adapt it for animation.

The result? “Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox”. The story is simple enough. After the League stops a plot by Professor Zoom, Flash races back in time-and in advertantly saves his mother from dying. This noble act causes a chain reaction that pretty much fucks everything up.

Barry awakes in this new world-a world at war. A world where Superman doesn’t exist, Batman isn’t Batman, but he’s still Batman (ill explain later..), a world where Aquaman and Wonder Woman have destroyed a third of Europe in war-and a world where he has no powers.

He races off to find the one person he thinks can help him regain his powers and set things right. Batman. Only catch is it’s NOT Bruce Wayne as Batman. It’s Thomas Wayne. Yes, in that alley it was Bruce who was gunned down and his parents survived-turning Martha into the Joker and Thomas into Batman. DC did a three issue mini-series called “Flashpoint: Batman: Knight of Vengeance”, which was absolutely amazing and a must read for everybody. They dont go into too much detail with the Thomas / Martha relationship. A nice flashback scene that hints at Martha becoming the Joker-and thats it. This Batman is psychotic(er?), carries a gun and out and out murders people.

He’s recruited by Cyborg to help stop World War III. After helping Barry regain his Flash powers, the three head off to find Superman-who is a shriveled up lab rat. See, in this world his ship didn’t land in Kansas, it landed in Metropolis, and he went right into government ‘care’.

As the action rages on, we see everyone kicking ass. We see Lois saved by a bunch of Wildstorm characters like Grifter…we get a hillarious exchange between Batman and Grifter as well.

FlashPlayerPlugin_11_7_700_224 2013-07-17 21-44-29-26Grifter: Its a shame we never teamed up when the world still existed.

Batman: Heh. Batman & Grifter, the boy idiot…..


As you can guess, by the end of some horrific violence and bloodshed (im NOT joking here kids. people get shanked.) Flash races through time, fixes his fuck up and saves the day-leading us to the most emotional scene in DC Animation history. When Flash delivers a note to Bruce Wayne (in his New 52 suit..)…from his dead father Thomas. The simplicity of it, seeing a tear roll down Batman’s cheek can bring a grown man to tears. It was powerful stuff.

On a technical side of things. The animation is…well..not DC’s best. Its a little too ‘anime. The character designs are…well…weird. All the women look fine, but all the guys are roided up and have tiny heads with giant chins.

Jay Olivia’s directing is perfectly fine. He proved himself with Young Justice, as well as Dark Knight Returns.

The voice acting is spotty. Kevin Conroy does return to voice Bruce Wayne Batman-while Thomas McKidd voices Thomas Wayne Batman. It’s…well..weird. McKidd goes a little too Punisher, a little too Christian Bale for my liking-but he does a fine enough job. Micheal B. Jordan (the black kid from Chronicle) voices Cyborg, and he’s fine. Sam Daly-son of Superman himself, Tim Daly-voices the Flashpoint Superman, while his dad voices Superman Proper. The name of the actor doing the Flash escapes me, but he’s pretty spot on. Hes not as quick witted as Rosembaum was in “Justice League”-but he was good.

Overall, check out Flashpoint. Is it the Best DC Animated movie ever? No. Is it the best of 2013? Well…Dark Knight part 2 came out-so no. But its a solid effort.

The next DCUA story will be “Justice League: War”-based on the first six issues of the New 52 Justice League book, where the team comes together for the first time to battle an invasion from Darkseid. Its due out this winter.

I want DC to ramp production out on these. Get these things out on a bi monthly basis. They seem to drop once a quarter, but we need more. DC Animation is LEAPS AND BOUNDS ahead of Marvels-so we need more.

Oh, DC. Give us a Nightwing animated movie. Please? K thanks bye.

—John Olesen

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