It’s the finale of the “Burning Down the House” storyline and man has the shit hit the fan. Our anti-heroes are down for the count and it looks like Rustam is going to win the day. (Shyeah right!) We review how it all gets put back together, but is it good?
Suicide Squad #15 (DC Comics)
So what’s it about? The official summary reads:
“BURNING DOWN THE HOUSE” finale! Fueled by vengeance, Harley Quinn travels to Rustam’s stronghold to take on the traitor Deadshot and his entire team of villains all by her lonesome. But help comes from a most unexpected place in this thrilling conclusion to the most shocking Suicide Squad story of the Rebirth era!
Why does this book matter?
Rob Williams has been writing a strong Suicide Squad series, first with Jim Lee drawing and now just as well with John Romita Jr. on art duty. The series has incorporated all the members well and made General Zod a serious freaking character to not mess with.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Okay, she’s way too comfortable.
Given the cover, you know something crazy is going down as Harley is never this heroically determined. Williams does not disappoint. The comic is a rollicking action packed affair with blood, double crosses, and fun action throughout its opening half. The action sequence works in part because it defies your expectations and real battle damage takes place. Certain characters will never be the same and Amanda Waller gets to show off her incredible strategic skills.
Make no mistake the opening 13 pages are all action with John Romita Jr. doing a bang up job of it too. I particularly like how he draws gore and Harley comes off as a mega badass (thanks as well to some kickass dialogue from Williams) as she tears her jacket open all Superman-esque like the cover implies, but also determinedly calls her team to action. Love or hate Romita Jr.’s Killer Croc, I dig the detail he puts into the scales of the character; he looks a bit more otherworldly and special with this detail. Romita Jr. gets to tell a bit of a fallout portion of the story, which allows him to show the characters in street clothes, calmer, happier, and with new developments on the way.
The second half of the issue, drawn by artist Eddy Barrows wraps up Amanda Waller’s story. Essentially Williams uses these last eight pages to tightly wrap things up in a bow, which involves acquiring escapees and Waller explaining how she planned everything including her death. This sequence allows Waller to tell Harcourt like it is whether she likes it or not, which allows their dynamic to grow a bit too. These pages have a painterly quality that gives the story a more realistic and cinematic feel. The layouts are quite nice too. Barrows draws a wicked one with Amanda Waller’s heart as the gutters, the veins pushing out from the heart and dividing up the page between panels. It’s a nice touch and hits the grotesque and dangerous plan she concocted home. The second half does a good job setting up where this team goes from here too.
Now that’s baller.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Splitting the book between two artists and essentially two stories does have its detriments. The first half for instance, goes very fast–partly due to it being mostly action–and then when Barrows takes over the pace is incredibly slow. This makes the pacing a bit wonky, although the stories are connected in a way that keeps things somewhat cohesive.
Is It Good?
This is an excellent finale that delivers answers, action, and fun character moments. Williams proves once again he’s probably the best guy for the job and Romita Jr. and Barrows kill it on art.