Damage #13 – Robert Venditti, Writer; Aaron Lopresti, Penciller; Matt Ryan, Inker; Hi-Fi, Colorist
Ray – 4/10
Ray: Damage as a series has never come together because it’s never given us any reason to care about Ethan Avery or his ongoing conflict with Damage. But the bigger problem is that the series keeps on bringing in guest stars, and gets them wrong too.
After the recent battle with the Justice League (or at least some odd version of them that included characters that haven’t been on the team since before the New 52), Ethan was finally neutralized and captured, waking up in the Justice League headquarters as somewhere between a captive and a guest. Batman, who he hasn’t encountered until now, is assigned to “Greet” him, and basically gives him a big spiel about how the League is going to train him to use his powers for good and help him keep Damage under control. Batman makes a good amount of sense, but Ethan isn’t hearing it – he’s been played before, and doesn’t trust anyone who wants to control him.
That’s where the series takes a turn, and Batman returns to paranoid Bat-dick mode. Turns out the “Justice League headquarters” is actually a hologram inside the Bat-plane. Batman has lured Ethan high over the sky and proceeds to engage him in a fight to distract him long enough to get to their destination. That’s another ongoing issue with this series – for all the talk of how Damage is one of the most dangerous beings alive, he mostly seems to lumber around and smash buildings. He’s like Hulk, if Hulk spent more time arguing with himself than actually smashing things.
Batman eventually drops Damage on Monster Island, where he’s surrounded by giant dragons and other beasts. This segment looks fantastic – Aaron Lopresti should always be drawing monsters – but the story just doesn’t hold up at all. The title is ending with #16, and it doesn’t look like any interesting developments are in sight.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.