Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Red Hood and the Outlaws #8 Review

Ra Ra Ra

Written by: Scott Lobdell
Art by: Kenneth Rocafort, Dan Brown and Taylor Esposito
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: March 8, 2017

I have loved this book since the start of Rebirth, but I don't think I am alone in wanting to see the Dark Trinity in full!  I mean, this is issue number eight and we really haven't seen the main draw of this book...Jason, Artemis and Bizarro together.  By the looks of the cover, we may have to wait a bit longer still.  Is that a bad thing?  Let's find out...

The issue starts with Red Hood and Artemis in a bar and before too long, we get a scene right out of "Above the Law".  Teeth, pool balls and blood are flying everywhere, but nothing compares to the craziness that Artemis comes face to face with...Akila!

It all ends up being a ruse (and actually the guy they came to the bar looking for), but with everyone seemingly knocked out or headed to the emergency room, Jason and Artemis pour a few drinks and talk about their pasts.  Actually, after stopping Jason from interrupting, Artemis tells hers.

We get to see her younger days training with Akila and learn that it was all to attain the title of Shim'tar or champion.  We also learn that Artemis was not part of the Amazons of Themyscira, but a sect living in Bana-Mighdall.  It was interesting to hear this quick bit of lore and also makes sense in the grand scheme of who Artemis is and the weapon she seeks.

Speaking of which, the story continues with Akila becoming the Shim'tar and possessing the Bow of Ra.  It was obvious right away that Akila was not the same and even if Artemis couldn't see it, another Amazonian Champion (guess who) showed up to stop the madness.  It was a very personal fight for Artemis and one that caused the Bow to go missing.  Of course, finding it is what Artemis is all about and the issue ends with Jason agreeing once again to help.

This was a decent issue that shows more of the Bow of Ra, but more importantly, sets up the danger inherent in finding and using it.  It should pay off if and when they find it and we see if Artemis can possess it without it possessing her.  Besides that, we do get some really good interaction between Jason and Artemis, but it just felt like filler in an issue that already felt padded in general.  Jason had already agreed to go get the Bow with Artemis and where the hell was Bizarro???  Oh well, it was still a nice little diversion, but after so many great issues, this one fell a little flat.

I always enjoy Kenneth Rocafort's art...except here.  Maybe I am still a bit to much enamored by Dexter Soy's take on everything Red Hood, but Rocafort's style kind of clashed with that.  It did get better as the issue went on, but it still only reached slightly above average to me.

Bits and Pieces:

While we get a bit more of Artemis' background and some information on the Bow of Ra, this issue felt a bit to much like filler to me.  This is easily my least favorite issue of this series so far and while I'm sure Lobdell will rebound quickly, I'm here to grade this issue and it is just above average to me.



  1. I think most people (myself included) probably didn't know that much about the Bana-Mighdall. That, and the sense that this is intended as a jumping on point, make it feel necessary to me. It could probably be best described as the Rebirth issue for Artemis, especially since we don't know that much about her in general.

    Rocafort's art was decent, except for the page where Wonder Woman was introduced. I think he forgot to include the heels for Wonder Woman's boots. Looking forward to Soy's return next month.

    1. This could have been done in a way that also gets the overall story going as well. I love this book, but it's overall pacing is starting to drag.

  2. Another character Building issue like last issue, but not filler Jim. We now know: where Artemis comes from, we know what the bow does, we know Artemis's goal to become a "Shim Tar", And I'm pretty sure there's a good reason Lobdell introduced us to Ahkila & a reason she was essentially kidnapped by maybe future villain of the story. Wasn't it just last week we had a character building issue of Roy & Oliver, why is this any worse than that. At least this is no Titans Hunt issue.

    I think Dexter Soys back next issue which has definitely been an issue for me, but Rocaforts Art is like a hundred times better than that last issues, so I'll count my blessings that if someone had to sub in for Soy, I'm glad it was Rocafort. Plus I loved that full page of Wonder Woman. I wished this issue had more Jason and Bizzaro. Only flaw I can see. 7/10

    1. Filler may have been a bad choice of words, but I want this book to pick up again. I thought the Black Mask arc went an issue or two too long and I just want the dark trinity. All I think I needed was mixing this backstory with something that also pushes the story Green Arrow.

      We end with Jason agreeing to help...which he already did.

    2. See for me i dont mind seeing them do nothing the character depth they gave them in other issue was enough, but we dont really get that here and nothing happens so worst issue so far still not too bad

    3. It's plenty of character depth for Artemis, and since the story going forward is about this bow that some god gives shim tars is important, and seemingly what ever god gave this bow to Ahkila probably knew what was going to happen to who ever wields it, I'd say that this gives the reader context of what to look for going forward. Find out who the outlaws will be going up against this next arc is important. Instead of guessing if it's Mr. Oz, Mr. Twister, Clark Kent, Abra Kadabra or even
      Mr. Mxzlpitlk.

    4. yea, i still like the book, but what we got here could have been done in less than 6 pages.

    5. Maybe I'm just grading to critically here, but when I see a 6 my mind always goes to D. And a D in my mind is a failing grade. I do think this issue was failing at anything, But I definitely see where your coming that this does stand out at all from the rest of the issues in the series so far. That's why I went for a 7, which is not bad, but also not good either.

    6. the issue with a letter grade comparison in anything under a 6 is an "F"....too big a gap of just F's

  3. I was psyched to see Rocafort's art, but I too was let down by it. I think the biggest issue with the art was actually on the colorist. Blond did a much better job coloring Rocafort's art.