Suicide Squad #31 – Rob Williams, Writer; Barnaby Bagenda, Penciller; Jay Leisten, Inker; Adriano Lucas, Colorist; Wilfredo Torres, Backup Artist
Ray – 5/10
Note: Corrina has given up on this title.
WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW
Ray: The penultimate issue of this arc revealing the secret history of the Suicide Squad has more twists and turns than many of the previous issue, finally resolving a few long-standing running plots and delivering a few strong action segments. The Red Wave, the malevolent alien intelligence behind the secrets of the moon base and the corruption of Rick Flag Sr., has been unleashed and possessed several members of the team. The nature of the Red Wave is one of the issue’s biggest problems – on one hand, it seems to be a powerful and cunning force that turns people against each other. But on the other…it’s rampaging around like a giant kaiju and seems to be more of a brute force villain. I won’t say I’m complaining about the latter, per se, but it does seem out of nowhere, entertaining as it may be.
The team makes a sojourn into the Phantom Zone, which is where Harley is finally reunited with Flag Jr, and Flag Sr makes a heroic sacrifice to help the team take the fight back to the Red Wave. The problem with this issue, though, is the same one I mentioned when it came to Titans – big moments have to be earned, and Harley and Rick Flag have been one of the oddest couples in all of DC. We were never given anything resembling a reason to believe they would work as a couple, or that Harley would be crushed by his loss (she seems to spend a lot of time crying over dull boyfriends for someone dating Poison Ivy). This is actually one of the better issues of the series in a bit, as it has a decent horror aesthetic and strong art by Barnaby Bagenda, but the story and the characters are still rather lacking.
Disclaimer: GeekDad received this title for review purposes.