Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Deathstroke #26 Review

Back to Life, Back to Reality

Written by: Priest
Art by: Diogenes Neves, Jason Paz, Jeromy Cox and Willie Shubert
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: December 6, 2016

Deathstroke is one of my favorite books in all of Rebirth.  It's the characters, the story, the art...well, I guess it's everything!  While the Defiance Squad has been awesome, I am having a hard time recommending it to others.  Why?  Because Priest is not making this book easy to just jump into, so instead of recommending this arc, I will recommend the entire series.  That could all change with this issue, however.  Does it?  Let's find out...

Spoiler doesn't.  Priest seems to delight in making Alex Antone work for his money with more editor's notes than any other DC book on the shelf right now.  Again, if you've been reading since the start, that will not bother you, but if you haven't, you might be a bit lost.  

The issue itself opens at Defiance HQ and the team is busy trying to figure out what happened to Slade. Well, actually they are arguing about it until they discover a Speedster was involved and they can track his signature...there's an app for that!

After a bit of a violent dream sequence that sets up the anger that Dr. Ikon has for Deathstroke, we see what our "hero" is up to.  It's no surprise he is a prisoner of Isherwood's, but we are left wondering what his former mate wants with him.

Meanwhile, Defiance finds the Society's (destroyed) meeting room and get some intel on what went down.  It points to Isherwood and Jericho knows where to find him.  While that is going on, Slade tells Ish he's a new man, but the good doctor isn't buying it.  He has his own agenda and it's to stop Deathstroke from ever killing again and uses a page from Amanda Waller's playbook to assure he doesn't go anywhere.

Throughout all this, we get a couple of really good scenes...the day Joey got his superhero name, a revisit of what Jericho did to Isherwood, the first time Ish and Slade met.  There isn't enough here to get new readers up to speed, but having read since the beginning, I liked seeing every one of them.

It all continues with Slade learning what was going on with Isherwood and Jericho and they end up in a huge fight over it and a bunch of other things...lots of baggage here!  Then things go wacko.  We see a young version of a very familiar character and then see him as his older self with Adeline.  What What???  However, that isn't the only crazy thing...wait until you see who shows up at the end!

It's always hard to review a single issue of this series.  Since so much of it is based on previous events and setting up future ones, it's almost like they should have a fluctuating score.  I really liked this issue because I've liked almost everything before it and Priest has gained my trust that this issue will be important going forward.  Plus, I love the promise of the cliffhanger.  Remember, though, your mileage may vary depending on your history with this series.

Bits and Pieces:

This is one of my favorite books and this issue doesn't change that fact.  Priest builds on everything he setup earlier while making that a continuing process for future issues.  The art is great and the story is confusing in a good way.  Recommended if you've been reading from the beginning.  If not, go and fix that!


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