"The Button, Part 1": In Gotham City, the Metropolis Mammoths and the Gotham Blades are entering the final stage of the Western Conference Finals. In Arkham Asylum, several inmates are watching the hockey match. In the last minute of the last period, a woman realizes that this is not a normal ga
- Wait, wait, wait. This is the game. Where they kill him. They're going to kill him! Stop it! Stop it! I can't stop it! I can't stop it! Stop It! Stop it. Can't you see? Nothing stops it. Superman won't come. Our friends will die. The Legion will die. No one will stop it... No one will save us!
Synopsis for "The Button, Part 1"
In Gotham City, the Metropolis Mammoths and the Gotham Blades are entering the final stage of the Western Conference Finals. In Arkham Asylum, several inmates are watching the hockey match. In the last minute of the last period, a woman realizes that this is not a normal game. It is the game; the game where a man will be killed. Suddenly, the woman enters a manic state upon seeing the significance of this game. As the orderlies grab her, she begins ranting about her friends dying, a legion dying, Superman failing to come, and no one being able to save them.
Meanwhile, Batman is monitoring news-feeds on the Batcomputer, including the Hockey Finals, while also studying various pictures of the mysterious button he found. While studying the button in his hand, the commentators covering the match report a fight breaking out between the respective teams' centres on the rink. As he rolls the button through his fingers, the fight escalates and the Gotham centre pulverizes the Metropolis centre before the referees can intervene. Having learned nothing, Batman tosses the coin onto a desk next to Psycho-Pirate's mask. As it lands, a small arc of electricity passes from the button to the mask. Batman barely notices the energy, when suddenly the button emits a bolt of lightning that hits him square in the chest, sweeping him off his feet. As he recovers, the Flashpoint version of his father is standing before him, confused that he is seeing his son. As Batman reaches out to touch him, Thomas fades away.
He immediately calls Flash to bring him up to speed on this development, but he is too busy fighting Samuroids to focus on Bruce. He tells Batman he will finish the Samuroids off and be at the Batcave in one minute. With 59 seconds until Barry arrives, Bruce hangs up, and a second later hears the sound of thunder that signals Barry's arrival. Bruce is surprised that Barry is early, but he turns to find not Barry, but the Reverse-Flash, who promptly decks Batman. As he recovers, Eobard explains that he has been dead and should still be dead, but a mysterious power resurrected him. With 50 seconds left, Bruce tries to tackle Eobard, but he phases himself to avoid, amused that Batman still tries to fight him. With 48 seconds to go, Eobard spends 4 seconds pummeling Batman. He lets up to make sure Batman is still alive, but he spits blood in his face as a response.
Amused at his resistance, he smashes Bruce into the display case for the letter from Thomas that Barry gave him after Flashpoint was corrected. At 38 seconds, he notices the letter. He takes 5 seconds to read the letter, mulling over his killer's last act. Once done reading, he then tears the letter to pieces before Bruce's eyes. With 28 seconds left, Bruce demands that Eobard leave his cave, but Eobard phases himself again. However Batman reminds him of a simple truth; he cannot stay steady while intangible unless he is anchored by something solid. Eobard is confused, giving Bruce an opening to jam a Batarang into his foot. At 22 seconds, Bruce uses the opening to lay into Thawne, but he sends him flying with a sonic boom, and phases his foot through the Batarang. At 15 seconds to go, Bruce again demands that Thawne leave. Eobard tells him that he can't win, but Bruce doesn't care about winning; he only needs to last for 11 more seconds, until Flash arrives.
The two continue fighting. Though Bruce gets a few hits in, Thawne comes out on top, but Bruce lasted long enough for his one minute to be up. However, Barry is late as usual, so a beaten Batman declares overtime as Thawne lands the knockout punch. Satisfied with his victory, Thawne notices the button and all of the pictures on the Batcomputer screens. Seeing its importance, he picks up the button to expect it, and a flash of light teleports him away. A few moments later, Thawne reappears with part of his body burned to the bone. As he collapses, he claims to have seen God. A few moments pass and thunder is heard in the Batcave, this time actually heralding Barry's arrival. He apologizes for being late, as he had taken a detour to try to save the hockey player that was beaten earlier, but he died on the rink. As he finishes his sentence, he notices a beaten Bruce and the now skeletal remains of the Reverse-Flash on the floor.
Appearing in "The Button, Part 1"
- Gotham Blades
- Imra Ardeen
- Metropolis Mammoths
- Batman (Thomas Wayne) (As an illusion only)
- Bruce Wayne (Flashpoint Timeline) (Mentioned only)
- Legion of Super-Heroes (Mentioned only)
- Psycho-Pirate (Mentioned only)
- Superman (Mentioned only)
- Wally West (Mentioned only)
- This is the first chapter of the "The Button" storyline, which continues in The Flash (Volume 5) #21.
- This issue is reprinted in Batman/The Flash: The Button.