Talk about a surprise in my life. I never thought I’d be looking at Red Hood and The Outlaws again. Yet here we are: I’m giving Red Hood and The Outlaws another chance. In the New 52 incarnation, I never could get into it. Then I heard friends of mine raving about it so I figured #7 would be a good jumping on point. Now the true test will be if this issue manages to hook me into the series. I’m open minded enough give this series a fair chance as I hope it turns out to be awesome. Enough delay, let’s get the review started. Without further ado, time to begin my adventure into Red Hood and The Outlaws #7.
Did I mention Red Hood and The Outlaws has Bizarro featured? I am a sucker for all things Bizarro.
Let’s start with this: Scott Lobdell is – to be polite – hit or miss for me. There are a good share of hits and misses here in this comic. At its core it’s about how Jason Todd a.k.a Red Hood is learning to work with Bizarro. I do like how Lobdell makes this a nice self contained book. Here’s the tough part: this is still part of an ongoing series. I wish I had more as to how this team works. We only get a little of Artemis, who’s part of the team. At least she plays some role in the issue. At least I get all the members of the team, even a hint of Alfred too, as the story moves forward. It’s a shame we didn’t get more Artemis but the issue was already crowded, so I understand that.
It is nice to see how Lobdell writes Bizarro and Red Hood despite my issues with the comic. You learn a lot about Bizarro here and how he operates now, in turn getting to learn more about Jason Todd. While Lobdell doesn’t do great at explaining the premise of the book, the Jason Todd and Bizarro moments work well. It is messy in explaining how the team works, but the Todd and Bizarro moments have so much heart to it. Scott Lobdell bleeds emotion with these two characters and it helps in making at least part of this work.
It’s uneven as a story but I’m surprised at how well the Jason Todd and Bizarro connection comes together.
Artistically, this book is strong overall. Honestly, this is where the book shines for me. Mirko Colak’s art works well with Tom Derenick’s breakdowns here. Add in some drop dead gorgeous coloring at points from Veronica Gandini and you have a strong art team. It’s not perfect, as some Colak’s faces don’t work as well for me as they should. The eyes, the lips, and general structure of the faces and even some of the bodies, don’t gel well for me storytelling wise. It’s mostly nitpicking, but it is stuff I notice.
Yet the coloring here is beautiful, especially with the ending and the Bizarro fight at the beginning, quality work from Gandini. Colak and Derenick’s strongest work of the issue is also the Bizarro fight and the final pages of the comic. If anything the final pages of this comic is what ultimately made me like the issue more as Lobdell and the team made them shine. It hits a few rough patches here and there in between, but the beginning and the ending of this book are spectacular to behold.
It’s a strange journey and a bit messy, yet surprisingly Red Hood and The Outlaws isn’t half bad.
It’s not a perfect comic by any means, but it has a lot of heart and I appreciate that. There’s enough here that I’m game to give the next issue a shot. Red Hood and The Outlaws works better for me now than it did in the New 52 incarnation that’s for sure. I guess as I said in the title, Bizarro as always is number one in my heart.