Written by: Steve Orlando
Art by: Aco, Hugo Petrus, Romulo Fajardo Jr. and Tom Napolitano
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: December 2, 2015
I have a confession... I used to be in love with Midnighter. In my mind, he couldn't do any wrong and I thought I'd stick by his side forever. You know how it is in the beginning when that new love can't do anything wrong in your eyes? Oh, those were good days indeed. Unfortunately, those times never last. Suddenly what made me fall in love with M began making me more and more angry. It started with his words. What intrigued me at first just started sounding like nonsense. Fist Questions? Pressing the Flesh? I guess I never knew what he was really talking about, I just loved the way he said it. I should have run away then, but I convinced myself to stay. "It will get better", I tried to convince myself, knowing deep down inside that wasn't true. How could it be? M had become a parody of himself and I'm left watching from the outside while others enjoy his company. Maybe I could lie to myself or at least pretend I still love him, but that point has long passed and I don't want to be that sort of person. I'll leave that for Midnighter's cadre of hangers-on. There are certainly plenty of them left. What, you're here for a comic book review and not to see my soul pouring out on the screen. What a relief and let's get on with it...
**Note: I am not writing this review as a "business plan" or as a hateful man. I am writing it because I enjoy writing reviews and this book is in my stack. Nothing more, nothing less. I respect every and all opinions and would love to hear if you disagree with me...then I will tell you why you're wrong. :)
If you haven't been reading Midnighter (and from the sales numbers, it's likely), last issue ended with a great cliffhanger featuring Prometheus. Who the hell is Prometheus? Don't worry, it wasn't the character per se, but what he did that was shocking. He had set himself to gain the love and trust of Midnighter throughout the series and then stabbed him in the back, the heart and literally in the gut. Oh snap! Yep, M's boyfriend ended up being his secret enemy and while other reviewers seemed shocked out of their socks and shorts, I was not impressed. It came out of nowhere and was more The Life of David Gale than Memento. Oh well, it lead us here didn't it? It sure did.
The issue starts with an origin story told through exposition. It's a cool enough concept that is actually better during multiple readings, but was not necessary to the story. Prometheus tells us that he is the God of Forethought, but I already had him pegged as the God of never shutting the hell up. Listen, I'm well aware of the comic book trope of villains telling the hero everything, but Prometheus takes it to the extreme. He spends the entire issue gloating about how he played Midnighter. If Steve Orlando's plan was to make me hate Prometheus...mission accomplished. Unfortunately, my hate stemmed from being annoyed with the character and not much more. I guess I could have been upset with what he did to Midnighter, but by the time this issue is a couple pages in, it felt so disconnected from last issue that I didn't care.
I will admit that if you like a comic full of action, you may get some thrills here. Personally, I found it more confusing than it needed to be, but it's okay. If Prometheus and Midnighter would just shut up for a second, I would have enjoyed it more. They don't shut up. Ever.
Half way through the issue, Orlando makes like Don Henley and gets to the Heart of the Matter. Prometheus was the one who stole the God Garden Tech, but most importantly Midnighter's history. Since nobody (not even Orlando, if you ask me) cares about the stolen Tech anymore, Midnighter's memories are the golden ticket and if he kills Prometheus he kills his past. What is a man supposed to...oh wait, he just knocked him out. Boy, that was anticlimactic. It's okay, though, because M says he knows exactly who he is. So, everything that you've been fighting for since the first issue is all bullshit and doesn't really matter to you anymore? Great.
The issue ends with some superhero thinking time with Jason (you remember Jason, right?), a little catch up with Marina (good old Marina), a peek at Apollo getting the worst gift an ex could get and Deadshot doing something that seems to set up the next arc, but I don't know and really could care less. Then it's back to Boston and Al's Masse...the bar to drink all this six issue bullshit away. I'd love to say something like, "I need a drink after this", but I'd rather press the flesh and ask some fist questions right now.
I know that most reviewers (myself included) usually do their work in a vacuum. Fuck that! What are all these people thinking??! This book has been good at it's best and awful for the rest of the time. The dialogue has been laughable and ridiculous and the actual story is paper thin. If you disagree with me, read the dialogue out loud and sit down and really think about the overall story. If you still like it, you are a better man or woman than me. I'd give this book to someone else to review on our site, but nobody else wants it. It's my cross to bear.
Aco is on art and while it's good enough, I may just be looking for something to like in this book. I really just want a consistent art team each month and we've gotten it lately. Of course, that will be changing again soon.
Bits and Pieces:
Unlike all those reviewers above me, I am not a fan of this book at all. In fact, it actually makes me angry that I even have to read and review it. Sure, I can and probably will give it up, but then you would only have these other reviews and someone has to break the spell cast on the entire review community. Everyone has the right to love and hate whatever they want, but at the end of the day, you have to be able to look into the mirror and live with yourself. I'm looking in the mirror right now and while it's a hideous sight, I can live with myself just fine.