Today’s guide for Patrons of Crushing Krisis seemed like it would be a straight-forward team guide, but I wasn’t accounting for how unique each iteration of this death-defying squadron tends to be…
Suicide Squad wasn’t always a team of villains serving a compulsory stint as reluctant heroes.
The title has its origins in the Silver Age with a pair of paramilitary mad science tales in The Brave and the Bold and Star Spangled War Stories (which, by the way, means that Suicide Squad actually predates the Justice League by a few months).
That Squadron X was a wildly different team than the modern version lead by Amanda Waller. The two were cleverly linked in the wake of Legends, the first post-Crisis DC event. Legends served as the introduction to Waller and her team of ne’er-do-wells, most of whom were incredibly obscure villains. Captain Boomerang was probably the most widely-known of the original cast, at the time!
Of course, now we associate Suicide Squad as much with Amanda Waller and those once-obscure villains like Boomerang, Deadshot, and Enchantress as we do with Harley Quinn. That was all the work of the New 52 iteration of the team in 2011 and the 2016 film version. Harley’s addition to the Squad makes for an odd fit at points, but it’s the version that hit cinemas so it’s like to be a permanent change. [Read more…] about New For Patrons: The Definitive Guide to DC’s Suicide Squad – from Silver Age to Present Day!
To celebrate the release of Logan in theaters this week, this week I’m releasing a guide that was on on my to-do list for a long time: The Definitive X-23 Collecting Guide and Reading Order.
That might lead you to ask, “Who is X-23, and what does she have to do with Logan?”
It’s a fair question.
You won’t see her name in any of the marketing of this week’s final Hugh Jackman Wolverine film. If you pay attention to such things you’ve probably seen a brooding young girl with a familiar set of claws between her knuckles.
Whether they call her by her codename or not in the film, that girl is X-23. In fact, whether they call her that or not would be a pretty big spoiler about her origins in the film. If you’re 100% spoiler averse when it comes to knowing the comics history of characters in comics movies, you probably should enjoy the trailer again and then stop reading now.
It seems like every comic book villain has been made into a hero, or at least a terrible person masquerading as a hero, which I suppose is pretty true to real life.
DC isn’t immune to the epidemic, but they haven’t been struck with it quite as hard as Marvel, where the X-Men to such an extent that they literally have no rogue’s gallery left.
DC’s Suicide Squad mirrors the concept of Marvel’s similar Thunderbolts: what if a group of some of the most irredeemable villains were offered temporary clemency to use their powers to benefit the government?
I’ll confess that the only thing that looks familiar here is Harley Quinn, who I only know from Batman cartoons. Will a squad of villains I’ve never met resonate at all?
Suicide Squad #1
Written by Adam Glass, art by Federico Dallocchio & Ransom Getty
Rating: 2.5 of 5 – Okay
In a Line: “A scream lets me know we’re making progress.”
#140char Review: Suicide Squad #1 is an effective intro that seems to tread Deadpool “bloody & whacky” ground, but I don’t know that I care about any of the villainous chars.
CK Says: Consider it.
Suicide Squad #1 stands in the middle of the pack of average DC Relaunch books with a nuanced story structure but inconsistent artwork. It comes down to whether this team of minor-league villains is compelling enough to support their own book, which is as much about them as about the plots they are subjected to.
So how is their first plot? Adam Glass sets up an interesting narrative, where half the team get brief origin stories – not of their villainous ways but of the missteps that lead to their capture. It’s a seriously effective device for a team book, and it jives well with the brutal interrogation they’re all being subjected to.
Deadshot and El Diablo both have human vices, but the deranged Harley Quinn is pure chaos and King Shark is a one-note cannibal. It would have been a good choice to throw in one or two members that weren’t in the same torture session as the squad, even if that meant holding a few characters back until next issue.
Federico Dallocchio handles the team well in the heavy blacks of the one-on-one torture sequences, but some of the other pages have a gawky silliness to them (especially on Quinn), which pushes the book into comedic Deadpool territory. A spread of the entire team on their first mission is especially bad. Can Dalocchio only draw this team well in low light and bondage gear? If so, it’s hard to know which version of Suicide Squad to come back for next month – the moodier, darker tone or the sillier one.
Despite the reintroductions I’m not sure this issue did enough to distinguish any one character for newer fans, though I will admit that a few last-minute twists piqued my interest. I think it is worth picking up the second issue to see if the team can get to the purpose of their new mission without committing mass murder, but the final direction in art will have a lot to do with if it’s worth sticking around beyond that.