So it's over. What's changed? We don't know. Not really.
Final Crisis was just about 5 issues too long. Or really, it should have been FC #1, Superman Beyond #1-2, FC #7. Yeah, that sounds about right. The rest is just killing time.
The new model for the DC Universe we thought we were getting is basically this: The Monitors pledge not to interfere anymore. Which sounds like there should be no more crises, but it's not like they caused all the others...
Don't get me wrong, I liked a lot of what I saw in Final Crisis #7. I liked the whole sweeping montage of Earth's heroes' final stand. I liked the 50 Supermen (Sunshine Superman!). I liked the Zoo Crew. I liked that it came all down to a personal story between two Monitors. I liked what Superman wished for from the Miracle Machine. I like that the real Aquaman is back!
It just didn't have any kind of emotional impact because the set-up didn't work. Production issues were only one part of the problem (chronic lateness, a piss-poor lead-in event, rotating artists, inconsequential tie-ins, and possible editorial interference). Morrison should take some knocks as well. He cluttered the story with too many new and irrelevant characters (the Japanese Justice League), made everything important happen in the background, never gave the apparently important Monitors the screen time required to make the ending works, let it all drag in the middle, and to top it all off, wrote a much better "Crisis" in the Superman Beyond tie-in, which frankly made the main story something like a footnote.
Though some of the new status quo is evident and well publicized - Barry Allen and Aquaman are back, the Martian Manhunter is dead - most of it is unknown (have there been ANY changes to the multiverse or the all-important Earth-1's continuity?) or nebulous (did we just see Hawkman and Hawkgirl die? Is the Batman in the cave really "our" Batman and how does that all tie into Battle for the Cowl? What will Legion of 3 Worlds affect the LSH and is it even relevant to Final Crisis?).
Despite the anti-climax of Final Crisis, I can't help but feel excited at the coming month's Omens & Origins titles. Final Crisis didn't really give up the goods on how the universe has changed (if at all), but in a sense, it's good that it'll allow each book's creators to define the new reality for their characters (obviously, I'm not so naive as to think DC Editorial didn't have a say in it - or to believe the effort will actually be coordinated into a coherent whole, sigh).
The one thing on the list that isn't an ongoing title (and I deeply resent that Vigilante gets a O&O tie-in) is Adventure Comics #0. I so wish this was going to star Aquaman, but unfortunately, it reprints Adventure #247, so the new Adventure Comics will be a Legion title. Well, that's good and everything, though I have a couple questions: 1) If it's a new continuity title, why reprint a Silver Age story already avaialble in a number of different formats? 2) Will it effectively spoil the ending of Legion of 3 Worlds by being published before the end of that mini-series is out? And 3) WHAT ABOUT AQUAMAN!!?!*
I leave you on that powerful and pertinent question. Until the next crisis...
*This message has been approved by F.O.A.M. And if not, I'm sure they'll rubber-stamp it.