Friday, September 21, 2018

New Challengers #5 Review

Did You Get That? 

Writer: Aaron Gillespie, Scott Snyder
Art Team: V Ken Marrion, Sandu Florea, Dinei Ribeiro
Release Date: September 19, 2018
Cover Price: $2.99

New Challengers has recovered to be a book I look forward to checking out each month, but now with all of our characters introduced to us, which was the formula of the first few issues, the writers seem ready to unleash a bevy of information pertinent to the story bringing this book home for a conclusion next issue.  Let's see how well this all works out with everything still left to tie up.

The issue attempts to throw a lot of information out at the reader this issue so it really takes multiple reads to soak in everything they're telling you, but to me it boils down to this: the Dark Multiverse combined with the power of the Source Wall that escaped are both unleashing their fury here and it becomes convoluted and very hard to follow from there. Basically Metal and No Justice have changed things and allowed all this.

The two versions of Prof battle atop the giant, and now assembled, Skeleton the team was hunting down pieces too, and much like the previous issues from there, this becomes another 'rat race' type of story from there with everyone fighting over one final important piece to the puzzle.  At this point some shocking twists and turns start flying about with, what I'll call, 'bad Prof' getting his head blown clean off, and the Challengers laying their cards on the table backing the Prof they've known and worked for this entire time .... again a disclaimer: I think! This issue becomes a bit confusing because it jumps around a lot between time and locations, while also involving versions of similar characters, and poor me's head, which has never read a Challengers comic until this year, is now swimming!

Overall things wrap up with a very interesting cliffhanger that has me interested in how this series will conclude, and doesn't impact my enjoyment of the past issues of this series, but I still can't shake that feeling like I missed something between issue number four and five.  The pacing and storytelling here had a few issues that threw me out of what I was reading and just had me asking myself "what?" at a few points. (I don't want to call it out as just thrown out and poorly explained because maybe I just didn't understand it. Feel free to tell me if I'm wrong in the comments below.)

The art as a whole looks great and V. Ken and company do an excellent job of bringing some of bringing the high concepts dealt with here to the page. The paneling is unique, the backgrounds look great, and the colors really pop in this issue all bringing the score up a bit.

Bits and Pieces:

New Challengers seems to rush a bit to a conclusion for next issue, but also makes me feel a tad like I missed an issue in between numbers four and five in the process, even though I've read all of the series so far. The focus seems to come back around in the end, and the art continues to be a joy to look at, which has me excited for a thrilling conclusion.


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