Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Suicide Squad #15 Review and **SPOILERS**



Always Bet On Waller

Writer: Rob Williams 
Pencillers: John Romita Jr. and Eddy Barrows 
Inkers: Richard Friend and Eber Ferreira 
Colorists: Dean White and Adriano Lucas 
Letterers: Pat Brosseau and Carlos M. Manbual 
Cover: Romita, Friend & White 
Cover Price: $2.99 
On Sale Date: April 12, 2017

**NON SPOILERS AND SCORE AT THE BOTTOM**

I’m so confused about where we are with this book, and I’m not sure whether it’s because the story is complex or that I checked out along the way. What about the freaking Annihilation Brigade??! That was such a dicktease, not once but twice so far in this series we see a weird-looking group of Russian metahumans—we’ve even gone so far as to learn all of their names—yet we have yet to really see them in action. Maybe we need to switch gears and let them get their own arc? You know Killer Croc could use a break, he probably hasn’t eaten a human being in weeks. Well, we’re going to conclude this recent story arc and hopefully find out what it’s all about. Or hopefully get a clue. Read my review of Suicide Squad #15, now!

Explain It!

Never has the phrase “explain it!” filled me with such dread…though, to be fair, I bring some of that on myself by using an exclamation point. How to describe this issue? It has the answers for the many questions readers have had about this story arc, even questions we didn’t yet have because we barely knew what the hell was going on. So just to get it out of the way: despite there being the same two art teams that have done the main story and the back-up since this “Waller’s dead” business began, and though this series has always had back-ups since Jim Lee was drawing the main stories at the beginning of Rebirth, this one doesn’t have a back-up. It’s treated as one, continuous story. Though there’s a sharp delineation between the first and second story. And, indeed, this is one time a back-up would have made perfect sense in the context of the narrative. I’m getting ahead of myself and just stalling at this point; let’s get into the book.
So this whole time, Amanda Waller set it up to look like Deadshot killed her, so he could join Rustam’s crew and kill specific people in the government without seeming culpable. That was actually a lot easier than I thought. It is also one of the most ludicrous plans ever conceived by fictional characters. Faking one’s death in a way that fools even the most advanced scientific techniques is simple comic book stuff; in this case, it’s done by an expertly-placed bullet coated in one of Enchantress’ spells. But there was so much damage caused here. I mean, we saw Washington D.C. burning to the ground last issue. Rustam busted several prisons open. Including Belle Reve! Waller sort of brusquely suggests that the swampland alligators will handle the ones that don’t come crawling back to the prison, and it’s like what the fuck?! “The ‘gators will handle them??” I guess there isn’t much of a penitence and rehabilitation program there.
So what else happens? Katana cuts off Deadshot’s hand, but he gets a robotic one at the end. Deadshot ends up saving Amanda Waller by killing Rustam in a supremely opportune moment. None of this makes me feel like Amanda Waller won, or that anyone is loyal to anything except the circumstances of the moment. We do get to see the Suicide Squad bloodily destroy Rustam’s gang of weirdos and that one computer program dude, Djinn, but I knew so little about any of them besides Djinn that my satisfaction was muted. Deadshot gets to see his kid, which was his main motivation all along. All’s well that ends nightmarishly, I suppose. Most of the information about Amanda Waller’s circuitous plan is dumped in the last third of the issue, what is normally a formal back-up and would have made an easy epilogue. This time, for no reason, it’s treated like part of the regular issue, despite an extreme shift in art and tone. I really get the impression that DC doesn’t know what to do with this book or where they want it to go, because it’s been standing in place since last November.


Bits and Pieces:


If you like convoluted plots and moronic subterfuge, then this is the issue for you. The rest of us will find it's like something created while falling down a flight of stairs. I know conspiracies are supposed to be complex, but even the most speed-addled 9/11 Truther would be incredulous at this. Eddy Barrows sure can draw, though.

3.5/10
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