The Squad Enters The Space Race!
The Suicide Squad comic has had its highs and lows during Rebirth. While I enjoyed the first two volumes, I put the book aside during it’s Burning Down The House story. It had less to do with the quality of writing, but rather it began to feel repetitive. The repetition continued into the Earthlings On Fire, and with the departure of one of the major plot points first created for the series, I was worried it would spiral towards poor quality. However, after the recent arc, which I did enjoy, it ended with a pair of characters we haven’t seen in decades: Rick Flag and Karin Grace, the original Suicide Squad.
**SOME SPOILERS BELOW**
This issue serves two purposes: returning to the status quo and to set up the next story.
During the night, a robot breaks into Belle Reve Penitentiary in an attempt to kill Amanda Waller. While the quick action of Deadshot stops the assassination, this leaves the questions: who sent the robot and where did it come from? By calculating its trajectory, the Squad learned that it had come from a space station with a database linked to an abandoned airfield in Nevada. This leads Amanda to split the team in two to investigate both fronts.
What I love about this issue is how Rob Williams has found a way to bring back the original Task Force X. Ever since the start of the New 52, the focus shifted towards the more popular villain team that causes mass chaos. Since the relaunch, Williams has been shifting back towards what the team first started as: a task force to help America. With the reintroduction of the original team, Williams has brought the vibe and team that made them popular, to begin with. I can’t wait to follow the compare and contrast between how the two teams operate as we move forward.
There is one downside to this issue that’s going to bring down fans of the series: a lack of action. This shouldn’t be too big of a surprise considering this issue was setting up the story, but it’s just that the Suicide Squad is explosive when it comes to action. Only time will tell if they return to that formula, but as of right now, be prepared for a quieter story.
While the story may be fantastic, the same cannot be said about the art. While I enjoyed Barnaby Bagenda’s work on The Omega Men series, I did not enjoy it here. The weakest part of the pencil work has to be the faces of nearly every character in the book. The clearest example of this would be Captain Boomerang. He may not be the most attractive character on the Squad, but there are times where he looks like an alien.
Grievances aside, there are parts of the art that really stand out. I love the design of the robots that the original Task Force X uses, as well as their pet alien. They have a classic Sci-Fi design that fits the environment that the issue takes place. The colors follow this style as well. Unlike previous storylines, the colors here are more subtle than vibrant, fitting more in line with the more subtle Task Force X stories.
While I believe this next story is going to be fantastic, there will be some who might not enjoy it. It’s a quieter issue that promises a few things as we move forward. Hopefully, the art improves as the story progresses as well. If you are a person who is willing to wait for the action and insanity of the Suicide Squad, I say pick this up and prepare for the coming storm.