Now that the epic Justice League vs. Suicide Squad series has wrapped up things are changing for the infamous villain super team. With John Romita Jr. taking over art duties, can the quality be sustained, and is it good?
Suicide Squad (2016-) #11 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The summary reads:
“BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE” part one! Spinning directly out of the events of JUSTICE LEAGUE VS. SUICIDE SQUAD! Hidden somewhere deep within, the world is a burning flame. Its light is blinding. Its heat is deadly. It’s a fire fueled by hatred, by rage and by vengeance. Used, abused and left for dead, the greatest foe the Suicide Squad has ever faced returns, more powerful than ever, to burn down the world Amanda Waller has given everything to protect.
Why does this book matter?
Rob Williams has crafted a story that’s compelling when it comes to Amanda Waller. She’s always been one of the baddest, most cunning villains running the show, but that might not last much longer. A story is developing that may shake things up for the Suicide Squad, dare I say…forever?
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Here comes the calvary!
If you’re looking for villains kicking butt, bantering as each character should, and working as a team you can’t go wrong here. This issue contains a mission which ends up progressing the plot a bit and leads to a fun concept of a break for the team. This concept bleeds into the backup which is drawn by Eddy Barrows. That makes this issue more cohesive than the previous issues though it does still tap into the character development of each character in the backup.
As far as characters, Williams appears to be beginning a romance of sorts for Harley (I won’t say with who) which could be compelling. There’s also minor interesting tidbits for Boomerang and Deadshot. The humanity of the characters is tapped into via some humor in the main portion of the book too. Really it’s Waller’s story that advances the most and–depending on how the cliffhanger plays out–could mean major changes next month.
The art by John Romita Jr. is certainly not loved by everyone, but I dig his ability to capture space and size and make everyone look unique and striking. Deadshot certainly looks extra thick, but hell it’s fun. Harley has a neat armored look in this issue too, which actually makes a hell of a lot of sense given how scantily clad she’s been in all out war situations in the past. Hack ends up getting a few scenes and the digital look works quite well. Think Tron meets The Matrix.
Barrows’ backup ends up having a lot more atmosphere and moody scenes, a bonus considering how dark it gets very quickly. His opening page is gorgeous and it conveys the sense of scale Waller deals with in her day to day job. There’s a good use of shadow with strong inks by Eber Ferreira as well. The last page conveys intense fear and struggle in a painterly sort of way that’s memorable.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Aside from small details and character moments there isn’t a whole lot to this book. It seems to retread a bit with Waller between the main book and the backup too. It all adds up to a reveal anyone could have guessed which doesn’t help matters.
The only character that seemed less than genuine was Deadshot. He has a moment with a family member and it’s laid on quite thick. There’s also a doozy of a play on words that’ll get your eyes rolling.
I prefer embiggen but what do I know?
Is It Good?
It’s good, but not stellar. I found the issue entertaining due to Williams’ ability to scatter character wrinkles throughout the story. Romita Jr. has his moments, and Barrows excels with atmosphere, but ultimately this is for fans of the series only.