Robocop: Citizens Arrest has been a rough ride for me so far. I did say in last review that I would give the title one more shot with this third issue. I had little hopes going in — will Robocop: Citizens Arrest #3 crawl its way out of the deep, dark hole it has dug, be more of the same, or *gasp*, even worse than the previous two issues? Spoiler alert! It doesn’t look good.
Did Robocop ditch the hoodie?
The number one question I had going into the book. What clothing will Robocop be fashioning off in this issue? I’m pleased to say, the hoodie is gone. At the end of the last issue, Robocop’s “retirement code” was reversed thanks to a microchip that he implanted into his head. Now Robocop is ready to wage war against the new enemy of Detroit.
That enemy is the one I referred to as “Big Guy”. I will continue that trend since I still don’t recall seeing this guy’s name. Is this going to be a reveal later in the story? Am I so disconnected from the story that I have just overlooked his moniker? Sad to say, I won’t be around to find out which it is. This third issue didn’t spark my interest at all. The citizens in the ravaged Ruins have decided to revolt against OCP and the Big Guy by burning their phones that keeps tabs on them, as well as giving them the opportunity to get paid while reporting crimes they witness during their daily life.
The biggest problem that I have is that this doesn’t feel like a Robcop story. He’s there, but not the main focus of the tale. The focus is Big Guy taking over Detroit as his own playground to build and do as he pleases. It just so happens that Robocop is the one that is going to stop him. There is finally an action sequence that Jorge Coelho does a decent job with, but it feels tacked on just so there is a much-needed action scene.
The conversation between Robocop and former cop Leo Reza is generic and bland as this review is going to be. I don’t feel a connection between the two and Brian Wood even goes so far as repeating the three prime directives over, while mentioning the fourth classified one that was removed in the film, but now there is a mysterious fifth directive that we find out Robocop inserted himself. Wait, what? So Big Guy has toyed around with Robocop enough and he now has it out for him. Another lackluster end to this issue as we are left with a less than thrilling question/cliffhanger.
So Dave, this is it!?
As I said, I can’t do it anymore after this issue. Brian Wood has good ideas, but they do not make a good Robocop story. The use of technology to advance law enforcement mixed with social media is an intriguing idea that could be a strong narrative on its own. A complete, separate story away from Robocop sounds interesting! But it falls criminally short here. I usually dig Coelho’s art, but Robocop looks obscure in some of the panels. He isn’t bulky enough and even looks like a brick block or some type of LEGO creation in parts of the book.
I stuck to my word and now I have to blast off boys and girls. I can’t stick around to see how Robocop: Citizens Arrest ends. If you are a Robocop fan and are enjoying this story, more power to you! I just couldn’t do it. If you are new to Robocop, this is not the place to begin your journey with this legendary character.