The Terrifics #23 – Gene Luen Yang, Writer; Sergio Davila, Penciller, Vicente Cifuentes, Inker; Protobunker, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Ray: After several issues of an extended Bizarro-based plotline that hurt the title’s momentum, Gene Luen Yang finds his momentum with The Terrifics #23 and delivers the best issue since Lemire’s departure.
When we last left off, Bizarro had hacked the timeline and begun rebooting time every day, trapping the Terrifics in a trap that reverted them to children and had a masked serial killer pursue them. But this team has two Terrific (pun intended) geniuses, and it doesn’t take long before they start figuring out something is wrong. The opening segment has the team confront the result of Bizarro’s time chaos – every era of time colliding in one and plunging the city into chaos. Ms. Terrific is lost in the timstream, finding herself in a strange world pursued by vicious mouth-like creatures at the end of time, as new artist Sergio Davila changes his art style up several times in the issue.
Then the timeline reboots again, and the characters wake up with a slowly growing awareness of their situation. It’s essentially Groundhog Day via DC, and this is a great choice of characters to work with for this concept.
By definition, Plastic Man, Metamorpho, and Phantom Girl sort of get marginalized here, but that’s fine since this is a great spotlight issue for the Terrific clan. There have been a lot of comparisons to Fantastic Four for this series, and this issue is a good example of why – but it’s also an example of why that works. The characters, especially the Holts, are both scientists first and superheroes second, and watching them problem-solve their way out of the end of the world is highly entertaining. They slowly figure out the rules of this twisted world and turn it against their enemy.
Even though it took way too long to get here, this is easily the best issue of Yang’s run and shows some of the same creative spirit he brought to Superman Smashes the Klan.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.