A series full of both highs and lows. How does it end?
Ho boy — ready to get weepy, Nadia Pym fans? Here it is, Unstoppable Wasp #8. Does the final issue satisfy? Is it good?
We open with Janet Van Dyne in bed again, but it’s decidedly less comfortable than before. It’s time for two smelly teenagers to meet their fate.
The estranged members of G.I.R.L. return, and Nadia finally gets what she deserves, before receiving a surprise she doesn’t. It’s not all sunshine, but maybe through hardship, you find something (or someone) that makes everything right.
And it’s okay to dance. Even if you’re a scientist.
Well, the opening scene of Unstoppable Wasp #8 confirms that this final issue will be told from the point of view of the original Wasp again, so there’s an early strike one. Fortunately, that’s the only major mistake writer Jeremy Whitley makes.
If the first few issues of this series were overly positive, and the latter ones were overly negative, the last one might finally strike the right balance. Nadia and all her friends get their happy endings, but it’s not without bittersweet and even traumatic moments. Concluding on Janet yet again is a serious disservice to Nadia, but there’s enough feel-good in here that it’s hard to complain. She does make a great observation on how this group differs from the Avengers in what they’re able to accomplish.
The voices of the different characters FINALLY differentiate from each other a bit, but it’s almost too late for that one. Still, there’s development that’s good to see. Narrowing the focus to just a couple of the several seems to have helped.
Ro Stein and Ted Brandt finish off the art duties, and their figures are expressive enough that it makes a person wonder if they should have been on Unstoppable Wasp the entire time. Whitley puts them through their emotional paces and they excel every time, not just with facials, but with body language, too. Megan Wilson again provides the color consistency — and hey, did you know she’s actually a mechanical engineer??? Yes, the usual backmatter provides the most surprising profile yet. How great that she got to work on this book, and excelled at her task.
Unstoppable Wasp #8 is not perfect. It’s hampered, to varying degrees, by the same problems present in other recent issues, but the good outweighs the bad here. Anyone who’s followed the series or invested in these characters will come away satisfied and feeling a little better about life when it’s over.
It was of course doomed from the start, but while it existed, Unstoppable Wasp was a bright beacon of all-ages enthusiasm in a sea of spandex. Yes, it was not unique in that respect, and many wondered if Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur made it redundant, but Wasp had a style and optimistic attitude, even through tragedy, all its own. As with many of those similar books, it was never a winner in the direct market, but here’s hoping that if finds more life in the differently-populated bookstore channel, and that some kids out there find the intended value in this fleeting gem.