Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Justice League Odyssey #4 Review

Writer: Joshua Williamson
Artists: Philippe Briones, Jeromy Cox, Deron Bennett
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: January 2, 2019

The Ghost Sector. A group of planets that, during the events of New Justice, were released from bottled imprisonment on Brainiac's home planet of Coluan. Cyborg, Starfire, and Azrael have been lured into the Ghost Sector by Darkseid, where they find out that many of these planets have worshiped them as gods for thousands of years. Joined by the Ghost Sector's Green Lantern sentry Jessica Cruz, the team is searching for a way out of the sector while also getting down to the mysteries of their deity status and what Darkseid wants from them.

After crash-landing on a planet that worships Starfire and retrieving something called the Multiverse key, they followed a Coluan signal to a junk planet. That signal was a trap for Coluan refugees to be captured and enslaved. After the team freed the slaves, a group of them (not the Coluans) start bowing and kneeling to Cyborg, claiming their god, The Machine, has returned. That is where issue #3 ends and where issue #4 begins.

Cyborg really just wants them to stop their chanting. Bringing up the only other thing he's ever done in his life, like he always does, he says he didn't like this kind of attention even when he played football. One of his worshipers takes off his hood to show that half of his face is machine-like, like Cyborg's, and begs him not to leave because The Machine Worlds need him. It's then decided that they'll let this guy bring them to the Machine Worlds to get these people to safety, so they load all of them onto the Brainiac ship and head there.

They land on the same planet we saw in the sub-story of issue #3, with the giant Cyborg statue in the middle of an enormous city. Azrael is excited because it's "an actual legit society", but Cyborg is getting a bad feeling. When they get off the ship, they're immediately confronted by The Programmer! He's heard that somebody claiming to be the Machine has arrived, and because there have been imposters before, he's got to make sure it's true. I'm not quite sure how a squad of flying red robots take the whole Odyssey team down because it's not made clear, but they're down alright. In defense of the guy who brought them there, he makes it clear that he believes Cyborg really is the machine. But the Programmer needs a test to be convinced.

It's here that we have an intermission where Darkseid tries to convince Queen Komand'r (AKA Blackfire, Starfire's older sister) to assist him, and we learn that Tamaran was the last world hidden by the Coluans. I've heard a bunch of crap about Darkseid's new look, but I'm really digging it.

Cyborg wakes up to footage of him, surprise surprise, playing football on a big screen. He's in the middle of a Colosseum with a chanting crowd all around him. Out comes Azrael riding one of three velociraptor-like robots, and Azrael tells him that they have to battle... or pretend-fight and make it look good. Instead, Cyborg uses his tech to really take down Azrael and the velocirobots, and the Programmer is convinced that he really is the Machine. And yes, to the chants of the crowd, we do get a BOOYA!

When an unconscious Azrael is returned to the cell holding Jessica and Starfire, the girls get him upright and make their escape through the guards and into the city. It's not long before Rapture shows up with the flying red robots. So Azrael finally gets to meet one of his loyal worshipers, and "it's about time". But meanwhile back at the ranch, Cyborg learns a few things about his own worshipers that are bit disturbing.

On my first read I didn't understand why they would make Cyborg go up against somebody he came with, but on the second read I figured it was more than likely part of the test. The previous imposters probably just made it look good like Azrael wanted. And speaking of Azrael, I've never really liked him that much but he's growing on me in this series. He's the only member of Odyssey that is actually enjoying this experience. Also, Rapture seems pretty awesome and I'm really looking forward to seeing more from him.

Bits and Pieces:

This was a recovery from the last issue and I enjoyed it. It feels like we're getting somewhere now with the question of why Tamaran was the last world collected, what happened at the very end which I won't spoil, and in its value for team building. The Odyssey group is such a great mix of characters for a space adventure, but they really haven't felt like they were coming together as a team until now.


No comments:

Post a Comment