Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Outsiders #4 Review


Written by: Jackson Lanzing, Collin Kelly
Art by: Robert Carey
Colors by: Valentina Taddeo
Letters by: Tom Napolitano
Cover art by: Roger Cruz, Adriano Lucas
Cover price: $4.99
Release date: February 13, 2024

The Outsiders #4 sends the team into crisis mode when they tack down a metahuman whose emotions can create joy or terror around the world.
Is The Outsiders #4 Good?

In The Outsiders #4, the team (somehow) figures out that simultaneously timed outbreaks of disastrous chaos are tied to a metahuman who holds emotional sway over the world. Since Jackson Lanzing and Collin Kelly have given this iteration of the team the mission statement of seeking out the weird things of the world, this one is right up their alley for the most coherent issue in the maxi-series so far.

When last we left the Outsiders, they traversed a nexus of dimensions where they came into contact with all the minds of every Batman across the multiverse because Drummer had a dream, and their afternoon was free.

Now, Drummer figures out that global rashes of disaster and violence are caused by a metahuman who uncontrollably inflicts her emotional state on people and the Earth. When the Outsiders track the woman to London, Drummer invites the woman for a quiet chat to explain who she is, why she has her powers, and what she can do with them. The issue ends with an open invitation for the woman, nicknamed Jenny Crisis, to join the team.

If you're wondering what the Outsiders actually accomplish in this issue, the answer is, "not much." The lion's share of this issue is spent developing Jenny's backstory. When the Outsiders finally track her down, you get a brief chase and a quiet chat with Drummer, and that's it. As origin stories go, this issue is a solid introduction to a potentially overpowered character. As an Outsiders story, it's practically non-existent.

What's great about Outsiders #4? Jenny Crisis has an interesting origin, a unique powerset, and the potential to be a formidable hero (or villain) in the future. Admittedly, her powerset is overpowered, so Lanzing and Kelly may have overshot the mark for a character that's believable and useful, but it's a good start.

What's not so great about Outsiders #4? Except for Drummer, the Outsiders do nothing in this issue. You may have called this the "Jenny Crisis (One-Shot), guest starring the Outsiders in a cameo role." Lanzing and Kelly could have at least given the Outsiders something more substantial to do than speak to an over-emotional woman using a calm voice. I'm almost surprised Batwoman didn't offer to diffuse the situation by drawing Jenny a warm bath and giving her some chocolate and Midol.

About The Reviewer: Gabriel Hernandez is the Publisher & EIC of ComicalOpinions.com, a comics review site dedicated to indie, small, and mid-sized publishers.

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Bits and Pieces:

The Outsiders #4 sets up a potentially powerful new ally (or enemy) for the team. That said, Jenny Crisis's powers may be too much to be practical, and the Outsiders are given nothing to do in this issue. In short, this issue is a mixed bag.


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