Friday, July 29, 2016

Legends of Tomorrow #5 Review and *SPOILERS*

Tomorrow Never Comes

Written By: See Below
Art By: See Below
Cover Price: $7.99
Release Date: July 20, 2016

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

While a lot of DC titles that aren't rocking the Rebirth moniker right now come off feeling like less compared to the newer stories we're getting, I can't help but feel that this title is the worse off because not only is it a six issue mini........ but it's eight goddamn dollars and it's full of characters that most people don't give a shit about.  Now, I'm not one of those people....... for the most part since I love Firestorm and Metal Men, but overall this series has been lacking in my mind and even reading it feels like a chore, which should never happen.  Hopefully this issue is just the thing to get me to change my mind and start singing the praises of Legends of Tomorrow with hallelujahs and amens and all that, but I'm not going to hold my breath........ at least not until I want attention.  Let's jump into this issue and see how Firestorm, Metamorpho, Sugar and Spike and the Metal Men are faring in their fifth issue.  Let's check it out.

Explain It!:

Firestorm in "United We Fall Part 5"

Written By: Gerry Conway
Art By: Eduardo Pansica, Rob Hunter, Andrew Dalhouse, Corey Breen

In this installment of Firestorm, we put all the military intervention we had in the previous issue behind us as Ronnie and Jason get back to being high school kids, with high school problems, while Professor Stein gets to work on figuring out where Multiplex is hiding....... and while I like this change of pace from the previous issue because honestly that military aspect of the book seemed to do nothing but pad the story out, what we're presented with here is just more of the same.  Ronnie doesn't know if he should take that football scholarship to a exclusive prep school and Jason is once again trying to interview for an internship that he kept missing due to an unexplained illness.  The only change we have here is it seems that Jason is finally starting to smarten up because when his academic rival offers him a drink before his interview, our boy genius doesn't drink it and actually holds onto the beverage so he can test it later.......... since every time he drank something from her before, he'd wind up in the hospital......... So hopefully something comes from that and we can at least have the satisfaction of seeing that little bitch hauled away in hand cuffs by the end of this series.  One thing that has been a bit of a disappointment to me in this series is that we barely see more than a page or two of our villain Multiplex so we're never really given a whole lot of details behind what his scheme is, but after reading this issue I kind of wish we never did because while it's really in depth and shows how unhinged Multiplex is........... I think a degree in physics is required to truly wrap your head around it....... or possibly I'm just a big ass dummy........ hell, I don't even know if physics is what you'd need a degree in to understand this, it just sounded good.  All I'm trying to say is that it's convoluted as hell and after Firestorm finds out where the villain is, this quantum field that he's created starts throwing monsters out and about like the flick "From Beyond" and I have no idea how this is supposed to help Danton Black in finding out which of him is the true version of his multiplying self.

This issue of Firestorm was confusing as hell in trying to figure out how the end result of Multiplex's plan could possibly help him in the long run.  We do get to see Ronnie and Jason just being their high school selves, which I really love, but even that seemed more of the same as we've gotten in previous issues and on top of that, the art didn't seem to be as good as its been previously.


Metamorpho in "Two Worlds, One Destiny Part 5: What Comes Around..."

Written By: Aaron Lopresti
Art By: Aaron Lopresti, Livesay, Chris Sotomayor
Lettered By: Michael Heisler

Over in the weird, alternate universe controlled by the Orb of Ra, Metamorpho makes quick work of Kanjar Ro and his cronies and Sapphire Stagg tries to make off with said Orb. She reflects upon her deception, recalling a conversation with her father where he promised to restore Rex Mason's humanity if she could get her mitts on the Orb of Ra, and plus a limitless energy source that could end famine or something or other. Just as Rex and Neith find Sapphire, she apologizes for her deception and gives up the Orb to return to its rightful velvet pillow. While she hangs back in remorse, she sees her father's lackey Java on the scene, and is too late--or unwilling--to warn Rex about his imminent attack!

After four issues of being kind of up and down with this book, we're finally coming to a head and things are getting interesting. It's sort of like It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, with so many different groups with different wants converging on this Orb, except that none of them have particularly zany vehicles. The art and color have been consistently good in this series, and that trend continues. This coulda been a standalone.


Sugar & Spike in "In the Beginning..."

Written By: Keith Giffen
Art By: Bilquis Eveley, Ivan Plascencia
Lettered By: Sal Cipriano

By way of a conversation between Spike and Bernie, their gadget wunderkind/tranq dart supplier, we learn Sugar & Spike's secret origin: they were private investigators that blundered into Computron violating his parole. The Flash came to wrap things up, and now Sugar & Spike are hired regularly by the superhero community to deal with the things too stupid to acknowledge. For instance, this comic book. Sugar calls to say they've been given office space at that Guess What Obscure DC Comics Bullshit I Remember Museum from last issue, which is fine since I doubt we'll be seeing them or the museum after this miniseries wraps up next issue.

I just have to ask: why? Why does this exist? For whom was it made? What relevance does it have to Sheldon Mayer's Sugar & Spike, besides the names and odd reference to them having known each other as toddlers? It's like, "Hey folks! Sugar and Spike are all grown up! And they're totally fucking boring!" I assume this whole thing must be an exercise in exposing the world to more of Bilquis Evely's artwork, which is an endeavor I can get behind.


The Metal Men In "Choosing Sides!"

Written By: Len Wein
Art By: Yildiray Cinar, Trevor Scott, Dean White, Hi-Fi, Ulises Arreola, Steve Wands

For our penultimate chapter of the Metal Men story we see our heroes and their newly created pseudo doppelgangers figure out which team is actually the best by beating the hell out of one another........ and while at points this is fun, it's really all we get, while getting the same old jokes like Mercury being the only metal that's liquid at room temperature.  The biggest development in this issue...... besides for the General coming off kind of crazy in this issue out of nowhere, is the recreation of Chemo, which comes off kind of odd here because his responsometer just shows up in the beginning of this story and heads straight for toxic waste and I just had to stop and wonder if I missed this little ball in the previous issue going off on its merry way or if I'm so used to issues shipping twice monthly now that a month is too much for me to retain continuity in my mind now.  Either way, Chemo is back and as our issue closes it looks like our two Metal Men teams are going to have to team up to take out this giant chemical creature....... which should be fun.  

With this issue being little more than a gigantic fight scene, I found myself wanting more because even though I love the Metal Men, their fights have never been all that interesting since all they really do is swirl around and transform into things and with this issue we times that by two.  The art, like the rest of the chapters in this series was fantastic though and Andrew Dalhouse's colors are some of the best in the business and I'm happy as hell that he's on this story.  Overall, we've got ourselves a great looking installment, where just not a lot happens........ unless you're all about metal on metal violence.


Bits and Pieces:

As we explain every month, Eric and I didn't think it fair to judge Legends of Tomorrow as a whole, since it is four totally separate comic books. But since people like that single number for their ledgers and scorecards, here's an average.

Firestorm: 5.5/10
Metamorpho: 8/10
Sugar & Spike: 4/10
Metal Men: 6.8/10


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