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Written By: Scott Lobdell Art By: Paolo Pantalena, Tanya Horie, Blond Cover Price: $2.99 Release Date: July 8, 2015
*Non Spoilers and Score At Bits and Pieces*
It's time to check in on our two remaining Outlaws...... you know, since Starfire went and got her own title and all that......... Red Hood and Arsenal! I love these characters together, but I got the real feeling that Starfire was an intricate part of this duo's dynamic because for whatever reason, the first issue felt a bit off. Yeah, we had the over the top action, quippy lines and Roy and Jason continuing their BFF status, but still..... just a little off. I know that I wasn't really a fan of the art of the first issue and the costume redesigns weren't the greatest, but there seemed to be something more making me miss Starfire as part of the team. Anyway, in the last issue we had Red Hood and Arsenal stop a political hostage negotiation gone wrong and in return they were offered a job by a government "fixer" who could use men with their talents. Let's see if our duo take Miss Battleworth up on her offer or if they simply continue working the leads and beating skulls where they need beating. Let's check it out.
Our story begins with Roy invading Jason's personal space. I don't know about all of you, but shower time is my private time. It's where I wake up and take time to reflect upon the day before and think about the day ahead............ and wash by butt hole. Anyway, there Jason is, enjoying himself a fine shower when Roy comes walking into the bathroom with a flamethrower and sets fire all around Jason..........dick move Roy. This is all because of some tech explained dealy, with Roy setting up a fire proof shower in case they were ever ambushed while they were washing their butt holes. All of that though is a lead up to Jason realizing that Roy has spent all the ransom money that they stole at the end of the last issue and on top of now being broke because of Roy's expensive hobby of inventing weapons, they're also being evicted from their warehouse home. Well, the boys have to eat so that leads them to contacting Miss Battleworth about a job, which is a bit more complicated than she made it appear last issue. After offering the job, Miss Battleworth went and did her homework on the two...........even though she seemed to know who they were last issue and has decided that they might be too much hassle to hire. Don't worry though, our heroes aren't going to be out on the street, holding up signs reading "Will Fight Crime For Food", instead Miss Battleworth offers them a audition for the job and sends the two to Paris to collect a thumb drive with sensitive data on it.
In Paris, our two have some time before their target leaves his office with the drive and Jason has set up an entire day of activities for Roy and him........ which means, he's found some bad guys to beat down and we have ourselves a montage of the day seen though the filter of a video game and while it's kind of odd to have it out of nowhere, it surprisingly fits the ridiculousness of this title. So with the montage finished, Jason and Roy go to have dinner, which is again just a convenient way to get close to anther target on Jason's list. This time we have a former scientist for S.H.A.D.E., who went and stole himself some tech before leaving the organization and once the fight starts we find out that this mad scientist is down right insane because he used this tech to create Mime Minions........ That's right, our heroes fight nanotech mimes...... which leads us to anther video game montage, which while fun the first time, gets a little played out here. Jason ends the fight when he shoots the scientist in the shoulder, severing his mental connection to the mimes. What our heroes don't see though is off panel a mysterious woman somehow brings the nano mimes back to life........ to silently cause our heroes trouble in the future I suspect.
In the end, the job that we've all been waiting to see our heroes complete is accomplished off panel and they deliver the thumb drive to Miss Battleworth, who agrees to keep the pair on. What she doesn't know though is that Roy switched out the actual drive for one that had a collection of Peppy La Pew cartoons on it. So our heroes go off to start their new life as government guns.
That's it for this issue of Red Hood/Arsenal and I just want to start off by saying that while I still don't like the costume redesigns, the art in this book is a lot better than in the last issue. We've got a new artist on this book and while I can't say that I'm sold on the style personally, it was really a step above what we got previously. Maybe it will grow on me, it just had a anime quality that I'm not often fond of, but it still worked here. As for the story......... Well, there wasn't much story. Pretty much we get Jason and Roy being presented as ass kickers and at this point I already know that and kind of want to lean on a bigger story........which I'm sure we'll eventually get, but the majority of the this and the previous issue is Roy making quips and Jason shooting things....... which if that's what you're looking for, then this is totally for you. I can totally understand wanting to get a book where you don't have to think too much and simply enjoying it for it's 80's action movie type stories, I just love these characters and want to see them grow.......eventually because while there wasn't much story to be found here, it was still fun and that goes a long way in my book.
Bits and Pieces:
Red Hood/Arsenal continues it's foray into the ridiculousness and that's what makes this book so hard to review. It doesn't take itself seriously and I don't think the reader is supposed to either. It's all about what you expect going in I guess because while I would like a more serious story, this series at this point looks like it won't be giving it to me. What I can tell you for sure though is, the art in this book is so much better than what we got in the previous issue, but the story merely continues to show us that Jason and Roy are bad asses...... that's about it.