We’re at the end of the line — the final issue of Iron Patriot, yet another book I have to see come to a close in some fashion. It’s been an interesting ride with the book to say the least. It started off so good and then almost immediately started falling apart.
The last issue managed to start raising the level of quality, so perhaps there is hope. Can this comic pull off a win for its final issue? Is it good?
Iron Patriot #5 (Marvel Comics)
James Rhodes remains stuck inside of his Iron Patriot suit as he watches his father Terrence fly into save him and go head to head with the unnamed villain. It’s clear that the bad dude is overpowered and that Rhodes’ dad will lose this fight. However, if Terrence can hit the guy’s power suit in the right way, James may be able to get free from the suit.
I love how the power suits punching each other makes no noise.
Remember what I said about Five Weapons ending this week? I said that if the book had went on longer, the ending would have been fine as a way to conclude the latest arc. The same thing can be applied to this comic. If this was the ending for the first arc, I would have been pretty much fine with it (“pretty much” being the key phrase here). There would have been a lot of potential for where the story could go from here, but as it stands? Ending it here is pretty bad and rather hollow.
Let’s start from the top: By the time the story ends; James’ father is dead, the villain in the power suit is defeated and killed by the main villains later on, the main villain who has been pulling the strings has gotten away with everything, the main villain’s plan is never revealed and still remains unknown, the power suit baddie gave James a flash drive, and everyone’s feeling rather down in the dumps and miserable.
That’s pretty dang sad and none of that will be followed up on because the comic is over now. While the book at the last minute tries to show that it’s aware of the fact that not everything will solved or wrapped up, it’s a pretty weak excuse for the amount of loose ends left over at the end (especially when Ales Kot said the story would wrap up just fine originally) and leaves us on a rather dour note. It’s also not like a lot of these problems couldn’t be fixed with a simple rewrite either.
Okay, so the ending is rather weak, but how about the rest of the comic? It’s not too bad in terms of the writing and emotional aspects. The emotional angle is decent and does its job in allowing us to feel the characters’ pain and sadness (though ultimately, I feel what the comic pulled was completely unnecessary). The pacing isn’t too bad either and the story flows well enough (except for one page where the narration isn’t very clear about who’s actually talking). The dialogue was decent, though nothing really jumps out about it. The ending page is heartwarming, but like I said, the ending in general leaves a lot to be desired. Also, the villains themselves remain pretty uninteresting due to how the book ends; just nothing interesting about them or their plans, which still aren’t explored at all.
Last thing to note is that in the previous review of the series, I said that James Rhodes didn’t really get to do much of anything during this entire mini-series and hadn’t really won any battle he got into. To be fair, this issue he finally gets to do something and defeat the villain, but it’s not really much a victory since he still lost his dad in the end. The word “hollow” comes to mind. Also, something that still stands out and is even more glaringly annoying: Tony Stark appeared in the finale issue wishing that he could have been there. Come to think of it, where the hell was the Avengers in this entire comic? All of these terrorist attacks all over the country, along with the attempted assassination of an ex-president, and not one word from them?
Finally, there is the artwork by Garry Brown and it’s alright. The problem with weird and inhuman looking faces (hopefully this can be fixed when this artist goes to work on Catwoman in October) that sometimes take away from the seriousness of the scene itself is still there. Otherwise, the action and layouts with it are pretty good overall. The coloring and inking are fine, and the story flows well enough from page to page.
Ooooo, pretty lights!
Is It Good?
Iron Patriot #5 is a weak conclusion overall to the run. It leaves way too many loose ends and plot threads hanging that really deserve following up on, while also deciding to end on a rather depressing note. The writing itself isn’t too bad and it is effective on an emotional level, but it ultimately needed some more fine tuning. After all is said and done, I don’t really recommend this mini-series.