Black Adam #6 – Priest, Writer; Eddy Barrows, Penciller; Eber Ferreira, Inker; Matt Herms, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Ray: As we reach the halfway point of Priest’s miniseries, this issue is sort of in an odd state of flux. It follows up on Bendis’ use of Black Adam in his Justice League run, but precedes the events of Dark Crisis. And in the aftermath of Adam’s murder of a fighter pilot in Khandaqi territory, he’s raised the ire of Batman—the League’s primary believer in the no-killing rule. Most of this issue is an elaborate battle between Batman and Black Adam, with Batman wearing an elaborate suit of armor that allows him to keep pace with the mystical antihero. But the fight is as much a psychological one, with the two trying to get under each others’ skin. If this feels a little odd, almost like it comes from a different story, there’s a reason for that. This is an odd issue, very different than Priest’s first five, and it looks like the series is talking a big turn next issue. This series is turning out a lot differently than I was expecting based on the first issue, and there’s a lot to dig into.
To start with, this version of Black Adam creates more of a distinction between Adam and Theo Adam than we’ve seen before. While Black Adam is quick to anger, Theo is a pragmatic and ruthless man who has no problem matching wits with Batman. He’s also politically aware, and some of his lines this issue may ruffle some feathers in the activist comic community. It was good to see an issue focused solely on Black Adam after Malik White played such a key role in the series—almost taking over it for a while. It might seem like the ending of the issue largely resets the chessboard and eliminates the consequences for this issue, but I feel like this was an essential issue to set the emotional stakes for the rest of the series. Black Adam faces off against Batman, but Theo Adam is forced to face himself in the mirror, and that’s one of the most intriguing fight scenes of the series so far.
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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.