Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Red Hood: Outlaw #39 Review

Monster Squad

Written By: Scott Lobdell
Art By: Kenneth Rocafort, Steve Firchow, Troy Peteri
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: October 23, 2019

Jason Todd is training the next generation of Super Villains for Lex Luthor..... you know, the whole "doom" thing and with that we have a whole new set of problems.... like is Red Hood able to keep these kids in check or will he get them all killed with his curriculum?  Time will tell, but previously we saw the class go on a field trip to STAR Labs, where they met up with Doomed and now it looks like the group will have to fight a bunch of monsters to get out of this field trip alive.  Let's jump into this issue and see if the next generation will last.  Let's check it out.

So for this issue of Red Hood we see our group of kids go up against Monster Arm and his group of scientists that have mingled their genes with monsters.... and really....... it's a lot of the same that we had with the previous issue, only this time we do see the kids start to act as a team and also get o see Doomed be welcomed into the fold with open arms, which is pretty awesome if you were a fan of the character during the DCYou.  Beyond that though, this is just a team building exercise that also shows Red Hood cracking wise and hoping that he's doing a good job instructing these kids.  Sadly, this bit that is just a lot of rehash of what we got previously is the best bit of the book.

For the rest of the book we catch up with Artemis, Bizarro, Ma Gunn and a now sentient Pup-Pup, the plushy Superman doll that Bizarro had.  Now while I do love Artemis and Bizarro and have been awaiting their return to the book, the explanation about Pup-Pup and then our heroes just returning out of nowhere really felt.......... out of nowhere.  Nothing really made sense and everything just seemed to happen because it had to instead of being something that made sense.  

All in all, Red Hood has struggled in my mind ever since........ Well, it's been struggling for a bit now, but even more under this new Year of the Villain turn and this issue doesn't do anything to change that, it actually just points to nothing in this story or any of the other stories leading up to this mattering because things will just happen because they need to instead of it happening naturally or through some kind of setup.  I'm not a fan of K. Roc's art and this issue doesn't do anything to change that, but I am at least happy that the section of story concerning our Generation Outlaw was actually engaging and showed the team working together well, while actually showing off more of their powers and personalities, not to mention that I'm happy that Doomed is now on the team.  I really hope that this series finds a path to go down that feels like it fits because it's gone from a title that I couldn't wait to read to something that I don't know what I'll end up reading from month to month.

Bits and Pieces:

I don't think I'll ever be a fan of K. Roc's style of art, but I know a lot of people enjoy it and there's some cool things in this issue if you are a fan.  Sadly though, beyond the art we have a bit of a rehash of our characters just fighting, while Jason cracks wise and sits back and this part is my favorite bit of the story.  Everything after that with Artemis and Bizarro feels forced, out of nowhere and barely makes sense and it comes off like there was no real direction or story for these characters.


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