New Suicide Squad #2-3 (Comics Review)

When DC relaunched Suicide Squad as New Suicide Squad in July this year, I was equal parts excited and apprehensive about it since my experience with the first volume of the title’s New 52 launch wasn’t all that positive. But then I read the first issue, and it proved to be really good in a way that I didn’t expect at all. The writing was better than I expected, and so was the art as well, and I’ve stuck with the title. Even the Future’s End one-shot, which I do admit I had some reservations about, proved to be better than I expected. Sure, it was bleak as hell, but that’s kind of the point of Future’s End.

The second and third issues of the new title have done much to cement my love of the title. Writer Sean Ryan continues to explore the differences between the different characters and also show off just who and what they are. They are all criminals first and foremost and putting a bunch of them together isn’t conducive to anyone’s health, but in Amanda Waller they have someone who really does understand them and seeing her manage this new team has been a great experience. And of course, the art by the army of creators working on the title has also turned out to be better than I expected.

New Suicide Squad 0203

In these two issues, we see how their mission to Moscow, ill-planned by their new handler Victor Sage, goes south and the kind of firepower they come up against as a result. Because the Russians haven’t been sitting idle while their counterparts in America have hired on mercenaries and supervillains to do the jobs no one else can do. The first issue was a great exercise in exposing the core of these characters, characters like Deadshot, Deathstroke, Harley Quinn, Joker’s Daughter, Black Manta, Amanda Waller and Victor Sage.

That’s what Sean Ryan continued on in the subsequent two issues and some of the most fun moments have been those in which the differences between characters of similar provenance have really come to the fore. We see how Harley Quinn is played off Joker’s Daughter again and again, really focusing on the heir fascination with the Joker and how Harley Quinn has gotten over that manic phase in her life, while Joker’s Daughter is getting dragged down deeper and deeper in that madman’s world. Then there are Deadshot and Deathstroke, who had a great showdown in the first issue and who are set to have another one in the next issue, if the ending of the third issue is any indication.

And then there are Victor Sage and Amanda Waller, who just cannot seem to cooperate at all, and the roots of their differences lie in the former not being able to understand just what makes the supervillains who they are, while Amanda understands them just perfectly. That’s what this series really is about, understanding what and who these characters are, what drives them, and how they get to working together. It is something that I saw incredibly well in the Future’s End one-shot, five years from the present timeline of the series, and it is there in the present as well.

That Sean gets the characters so well is just icing on the cake. The big fight between Harley and Joker’s Daughter is really significant because of what it symbolizes: that the former is totally over her lovesick fascination with the Clown Prince of Crime, and that she is her own person. Combined with everything happening in the Harley Quinn ongoing, it is creating a great stage for Harley and I’m loving her even more.

In the second issue, we have Tom Derenick on layouts, with Scott Hanna, Mark Irwin, Norm Rapmund and Batt on the finishes while Blond does the colours, Dave Sharpe does the letters, and Jeremy Roberts does the cover with Blond. In the third issue, we have Tom Derenick on the breakdowns, with Jeremy Roberts and Rob Hunter on the art, Blond on the colours, Taylor Esposito on the letters, and the duo of Roberts and Blond on the cover once again. There are some differences in the art between the two issues, but there is still some great consistency, and I really loved how the artists drew Deadshot and Black Manta and Harley Quinn. These three really make off with the best panels in either of the issues. The colours and inks are great of course, but that’s also because the pencilwork is so great to begin with.

A grand, consistent start to the series, and that’s enough for me, really.

Rating: 9/10

More New Suicide Squad: #1, Future’s End.

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Posted on October 13, 2014, in Comics Reviews, Review Central and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

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