Justice League Odyssey #24 – Dan Abnett, Writer; Cliff Richards, Artist; Rain Beredo, Colorist
Ray – 8/10
Ray: With only one issue to go until this series ends, there is a lot of story packed into only twenty pages. Darkseid has returned and Arla Hax has betrayed the team to him to save her own skin. Darkseid is quickly able to blackmail Gamma Knife and Dex-Starr into joining him as well – and Dex-Starr’s confused reactions to everything make the issue. Everyone’s fuzziest red lantern steals the show again. With Epoch defeated, Jessica Cruz has one last desperate plan to foil Darkseid, and it involves a lot of time travel and other strange twists – including the return of Starfire and Azrael, after an extended absence from the book, plus doubling up on some other characters. There are a lot of good character beats in this issue, even if the pace is just shy of frantic at some points. Thankfully, the final issue is extra-sized, which should give Abnett the time he needs to wrap it up. Whatever happens, let Jessica keep Dex-Starr as a pet. We need this in 2020.
Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity #5 – Kami Garcia, Writer; Mico Suayan, Jason Badower, Artists; Annette Kwok, Colorist
Ray – 8/10
Ray: After three months off, Kami Garcia’s hard-boiled crime thriller returns with an issue with some great – and disturbing – visual style. Mico Suayan and Jason Badower continue to do a great job on art, switching off between black-and-white present-day scenes and vivid full-color flashbacks. That dynamic is shaken up with an extensive present-day segment at the Gotham Aquarium, but it helps that it’s the best-drawn segment of the series so far. The tensest moments of this issue come when the mysterious Joker has Harley cornered in her apartment, with her still not sure if this is the genuine article or an insane cosplay. I can’t say I find the villain all that compelling – his backstory is pretty standard, and his monologues are pretty stock angry-boy tropes – but Garcia knows how to write a suspense thriller and her Harley is very different, but no less compelling than the comic book version. Fans of shows like Criminal Minds should love this comic.
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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.