Brightest Day #22 - The jakob187 Review
I kept trying to figure out why the hell I was still picking this book up on a faithful basis, as I feel like only a third of this series has really been worthwhile. However, now that we're here in issue #22, there are FINALLY some pretty big answers unveiled. As the cover proclaims, Firestorm and the Anti-Monitor have a bout with each other. That bout lasts a max of about two or three pages (including a GLARING typo on a full-page panel of "LET'S DO NOW!"). The art passes for serviceable, as there has been better in the series that featured Firestorm. Beyond that, this issue deals more with wrapping up Firestorm's story arc in the series with a hasty and rushed fashion. There's been nothing but build-up with the character and his struggles through this whole situation, and now the resolution comes around in such a brisk fashion that it makes you wonder why it really took so long to get to this point.
That's where the biggest problem with this issue lies. You unfortunately realize that it took 22 issues to get to this point, and if anything, the previous four issues of this have basically made me feel like this could've easily been a 12 or 14 issue series. There's so much fat that wasn't trimmed from this series. I can agree with the point of many that this series has a bit more of a deliberate pacing for character study, but the character studies themselves haven't been particularly interesting most of the time. There have been focuses on things that just didn't end up seeming significant, and in hindsight, DC could've seriously cut out about two-thirds of their material. These problems in the series are amplified by issue #22 because of the amount of answers it contains within 32 pages. Why couldn't this have happened with the rest of the series?
Regardless, the issue does have answers, and they are some pretty massive ones. Coming back around to the Anti-Monitor definitely has its purpose, and if anything, the answer is clever. It makes you understand that Geoff Johns had a purpose for the White Lantern, a purpose for including the Anti-Monitor, a reason for the Black Lanterns...but it makes you question why so many characters were brought back when most of them have led uninteresting stories.