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Written By: Rob Williams Art By: Eddy Barrows, Ronan Cliquet, RB Silva, Eber Ferreira, Marc Deering, Andy Owens, Gabe Eltaeb, Tom Napolitano Cover Price: $2.99 Release Date: February 17, 2016
*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*
Martian Manhunter has been on a hell of a ride since this series began and this ride has taken us from Martian Manhunter's suicide, to us finding out that he separated himself into different personalities, to him causing not only the end of Earth, but the magically recreated Mars from the past........ Yeah, it's been crazy. Most currently though, Martian Manhunter has decided that he will fight for the people of Mars in a strange war that was kind of laid out like it was meant to be between Earth and Mars, but appears to be more of a civil war between the human residents of the Red planet and it's people against Ma'alefa'ak and his forces. It's kind of up in the air about what's going on with that though because with all that plot thrown at us we also have a mysterious Martian boy, who seems to be the key to everything, but who for the most part has remained enigmatic about his role. That's a lot of shit right there and with my looming questions about how this Mars could have existed for twenty years, (from what we learned from the now adult Alicia) while Earth and it are just now looking like they're about to collide. Let's jump into this issue and see what goes down between Alicia and Ma'alefa'ak's war mechs as they go head to head in what may be the final fight for Mars. Let's check it out.
Our issue begins with John Constantine of all people as he tries to recover from a long night of drinking and demon whoring. While I think it's odd as hell to start out with our brash Brit, it does begin to answer some of my questions about what's going on with this reborn Mars, when Constantine notices that a rogue planet is coming into Earth's atmosphere, but Mars as we know it is still in its place........ and also, it seems that he's the only one who can see the on coming collision. So yeah, pretty much what I get from this is that all my questions about what's going on can simply be answered with magic and as long as it's spelled out like that, I don't care because magic is something that you can't fuck with and you should never try. Alright, so we got magic as our go to answer, but we also have Constantine running off half naked looking like he'll be returning to this series, possibly with a helping hand.
Back on Mars, the fight of the mechs is on, but it's very short lived when Ma'alefa'ak sees that the Martian child is in sight and decides that he needs that boy and J'onn to make his escape from this doomed planet and puts that as a priority........ which he totally regretted because after J'onn was in the mech's grasp, our Martian hero took that time to finally realize what he is and what he could do..........which was a little too convenient even for me..... and J'onn molded his body throughout the war city mech, until he became it inside and out, hence the Iron Giant Manhunter. Ma'alefa'ak, knowing that his time was numbered ran for the hills and after a rousing speech by Martian Manhunter to get Alicia and his other personalities back on his side, our heroes set out on their final mission to set things right and to stop this Mars from the past from colliding into Earth..........while saving as many Martians as they can with the ultimate goal of relocating them on Earth.......... which from the way my Facebook feed looks with its anti-refugee policy in the United States, I don't think they're going to get the Creed welcome with arms wide open.
In the end, Mister Biscuits makes his way up the Martian mountainside because he spotted the Martian child in the previous issue and he's led down a deep hole....... kind of like Alice chasing the White Rabbit and as our issue closes, Mister Biscuits looks upon the Martian child, who tells him that since Biscuits is Martian Manhunter's subconscious, it will be easier to show Biscuits just how he was created.
That's it for this issue of Martian Manhunter and after a couple of issues on Mars, where it felt like we were just kind of chilling out without much going on, this issue really picked up the pace and while I appreciate that, it seemed really forced in doing so. I mean up until this issue I was completely under the assumption that Martian Manhunter was all like "Fuck humans, I'm all about Martians and that's it", but it seems that since Pearl being the heart of his personality decided that she's more human than Martian that J'onn is just going with it. On top of us moving right along and getting this story moving, we also had the inclusion of Constantine, which in my mind is always a plus and we got to actually see J'onn's personalities finally defined in this issue with Pearl being the heart like I just mentioned, Agent Wessel being the hunter and of course Mister Biscuits being the subconscious........ which was kind of alluded to before, but I dig that it's finally spelled out for us so I don't feel like a dummy for saying something without knowing. As always the art in this book was amazing. Hell, even though the idea of an Iron Giant Manhunter sounds silly as hell, the way it's presented here is pretty bad ass and even though we had a bunch of artists on this book, it all came together really nice and was just one hell of a good looking issue.
Bits and Pieces:
Our Mars/Earth collision story is moving right along here as our hero finally gets on board......... well, the hero trolley and the mystery of that strange Martian child is explored more. Some of the reactions from our characters in this issue come off a bit forced to get the story moving again, but overall this is a very enjoyable issue that's just full of excellent art that really works together nicely even though we have a bunch of artists throwing their styles around to bring us this Martian Manhunter adventure. While the series to me was feeling a bit stale before this, I have to say that I'm getting excited to see what's next.