Review: Suicide Squad Vol. 4 – Discipline and Punish; by Ales (thank God it’s a new writer!) Kot

Suicide Squad, Vol. 4: Discipline and PunishSuicide Squad, Vol. 4: Discipline and Punish by Ales Kot
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 Stars for sure, creeping a bit higher?


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After the clusterfuck that was the “writing” of Adam Glass (is NOT half full of anything but shitty writing), this new direction from Ales Kot is a VERY welcome change. It’s like eating Spam for 3 meals in a row, and then, having a hamburger: The hamburger to anyone else, is just an average hamburger, but to anyone who choked down the Spam? It’s fucking Filet Mignon!

Finally, instead of infighting, triple agents, betrayal, the constant threat of blowing up bombs in their heads, and Deadshot being shot. dead. by. his. own. gun.; we have a squad of killers actually working at their maximum potential, and we’ve mostly eliminated the C-list cannon fodder.

No Yo-yo (shockingly he didn’t regenerate AGAIN), Voltaic is there, and talks, all totally normal, but gets the shit kicked out of him, and the aftermath, well takes him out of the picture. No Avalanche, El Diablo, Black Spider, or any other fucktards.

We get: Deadshot, ALIVE AGAIN!!!!!! Harley, Unknown Soldier, King Shark, Cheetah (Wonder Woman villain) and…James Gordon Junior…WHA?????? OK well he’s just an advisor to Waller, but he seems to make a lot better choices and suggestions than the past people have.

We finally get told that they unlocked Samsara Serum, which resurrected all the dead peeps (Deadshot especially). We also see the team work together to get the upper hand on Waller, and we also see Gordon wisely work with them, in order to balance things out and get everyone moving forward to actually accomplish shit.

The team are all actually bad guys here, not lame-o dudes. Deadshot kicks the shit out of Unknowy for payback after he killed him last volume, and Gordon knocks Deadshot out. Cheetah leaves Deadshot to fall to his death (though he doesn’t actually).

We finally see the violence directed against the right people (ie. targets, and not each other so much. We also have a revelation, tied to Voltaic’s death…that’s permanent this time…the Samsara Serum…will actually kill people exposed to it…including…Deadshot AND Waller!!! Dum Duuu DAHHH!

The art goes downhill in the second half of the book, but seeing as how the writing isn’t spam anymore…I’m not going to gripe too much about it.

Finally, instead of having their target always get the better of them, have a spy, an infiltrator, or just defeat them, with the aid of Gordon’s brain and everyone on point, they totally bitchslap the minions of the badguy (named John Lynch…how original! He’s the bad guy in the A-Team, in one of Ed Brubaker’s books – SLEEPER I think…and just obvious) who was also on Team 7 (seriously, who the fuck WASN’T on this Team 7?)

Finally a squad of psychos and killers (who are actually intelligent here) gets the job done and just makes the other baddies look like chumps.

Oh, and there’s a Foreigner song lyric used! I love it. 80s music nostalgia used in a 2010s comic…so good. Big Smile. (Oh and Gordon is in love with Waller!)

Then we’ve got 2 issues by Matt Kindt, which are both stand alones, one about Harley and one about Deadshot (because this series is making them the bread and butter of it, no matter what.)

I didn’t care for the Harley one too much, as Mike ably pointed out, there’s more info about how she got her costume together than anything else, and it’s not very interesting, just kinda rehashed info.
I’m guessing Kindt wanted these to be packaged together, because Deadshot shows up at the end of Harley’s, and his words at the end are more or less EXACTLY what he says at the end of his own story the next issue.

Deadshot’s focuses on his origin, which I wasn’t really aware of, and it’s kinda Batman-esque, and also in a bad part of Gotham…but it doesn’t have the same outcome, even though he also becomes a highly trained soldier in his own personal war, and he likes big money.

I almost liked it, except he lost the plot (Kindt) when he made it appear that Floyd’s only motivation was $$…for everything else he shows, he just ruins it by showing the $$ motivation. I could have done without that…and then he goes and pretty much says he’s useless without being aimed at the right target, and can’t do anything alone…so of course he has to go back to Waller and the Squad to be complete or worthwhile…

What a pile…for everything in the Deadshot issue I liked, he ruined it in the last 3 pages by wiping his ass with it.

So all in all, if you’ve not read any of Suicide Squad in New 52, this is average at best…if you’ve read it all, then this is like a Da Vinci masterpiece.

In all honesty, it’s just above 3 stars, but the context of how bad it was, makes this a lot better. Were I to read it without context or not right after all the others today, it wouldn’t impress as much.

I would actually go find volume 5 now…I will just wait for the library, but at least Ales Kot proved he’s at least worth paying some attention to as a writer who’s not stupid.


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Review: Suicide Squad Vol. 3 Death is for Suckers (and so is this plot!) by Adam Glass (is full of rubbish)

Suicide Squad, Vol. 3: Death is for SuckersSuicide Squad, Vol. 3: Death is for Suckers by Adam Glass
My rating: 2 of 5 stars


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OK this is the comically bad type of book…as in I want to see how bad it can get…it’s not one of those misogynist or homophobic or just stupid books, it’s just a lame book with stiff writing.

So, at the end of last volume, Deadshot shot Regulus by shooting through himself! So there really was a Suicide on the Suicide Squad…although I read it as he just wounded himself…and I read it like 4 hours ago…Anyhoo…moving right along to the start of Vol. 3 and we’re having a military funeral for Deady because well once a Marine, always a Marine, even a high-priced Assassin one.

Who should crash the funeral? Why Harley’s long lost boyfriend, Mr. Nicholas Face-Off Cage himself, the Heath Ledger!

He’s not so happy that Harley and Floyd (Deadshot) were getting their Missy Elliot, so they sorta break up in a violent manner, he leaves her chained up in a room full of skeletons…

Flash forward, and Waller is letting Boomerang go for his fine work with Basilisk, when Harley stumbles to the gates of Belle Reve, having escaped Mista J!

Then, who should pop up from the hospital bed, but? (If you said Deadshot, you win a prize. If you said Deadpool, you’re in the wrong company, and also, you’re probably too funny for this GRITTY REBOOT!)

So Deadshot has now returned from the dead, and Harley is healed from her issues…plus, we also have YoYo returned from his time in the King Shark Guts…however, some of them are still not recovered from their Basilisk battle…

So there’s a new mission, Deadshot and Harley are sent on, because of course, they’re the stars of this book. Who should join them? Yo-yo, a recovered King Shark and…Voltaic! (Wait, you ask, who the fuck is that? Why silly reader, that’s one of the members of the Squad from Volume 1 who Deadshot…Shot…Dead…in the Head…with Lead (bullets).) Ya, didn’t really care there, but OK, so they’re all now death proof or some shit, because the smarties finally realize that wait, they should all be dead by now…oh well, it’s time to go on a mission so we’ll just forget all of that stuff…

SIDEBAR! (Judge Ito: So ummm if they cannot be killed, why is this Waller able to bully them into doing her bidding by saying she’ll blow up the Nano-Bombs in their necks? If that’s the case, shouldn’t they just call her bluff? Besides, don’t they know the sequels always fail if they get rid of too many main characters at once?)

Anyhowzers…this time, we’re after a very evil one…Red ORCHID! Who is? Fucked if I know…well turns out, she’s Yo-Yo’s sister (cue up unnecessary flashback number 62 of this series). Yup.

Cue up some ripoff scenes from Kill Bill (room full of ninjas and shoguns and all this stuff of Asian martial arts culture in suits, I was waiting for Lucy Liu, but instead I got Asian Schoolgirls with Morningstars…yup VERY original!)

Voltaic gets stabbed through the heart with a Samurai sword, and doesn’t even flinch, so I’m assuming he’s a zombie or some shit, because he hasn’t said a word since his resurrection, so I’m guessing they’re going to tell us that they unlocked the secret of Resurrection Man (who’s hand they captured last volume…well, cut off and stole I should say…) and that’s why no one dies? I think that might make TOO much sense though, so shame on me…

Anyhoo. Red Orchid appears, alongside whomelse? Why, it’s Regulus! Who’s also not dead (and was just shot-dead by dead-shot…but is not.) how wonderful.
Yoyo’s internal monologue turns on and he becomes all Carpe Diem and heroic, as he leads the troops…
Then we see that Waller has sent them to retrieve a prisoner! Why, it’s KURT LANCE!!!!

(Ummm? Who? Well kiddos, he’s actually Dinah Lance’s husband, who she’s on the run from everyone for apparently murdering!!! – Turns out he too was part of Team 7 with Waller and Regulus (also I think Deathstroke was part of that team)) Ugh for fuck’s sake this is just retarded at this point.

The only reason I give this 2 stars is because of the bitchy joke that gets told: Yoyo tries to rally the troops, and cries out “SUICIDE SQUAD! ASSEMBLE!” to which Deadshot replies “That sounds ridiculous…who says that?” And I was like Oh no you di-int! And he was all, Hells ya I di-id! OOOOH Gurl!

Ya.
Well apparently, Regulus takes Kurt Lance and flees, and this is enough to make the hard as nails Waller run into combat!

At this point, Red Orchid has won and is about to kill everyone Poison Ivy style, but Yo yo wraps his head around hers, and gets Deadshot to shoot him in the neck (where his nano bomb of course, explodes heartily!). Hero! Yo yo goes out with a bang, but I feel like I’m going to see him in Volume 4 again…I just have a feeling…

The explosion leaves everyone dead..or so Deadshot thinks, until he’s saved by Waller, who’s somehow moved from her home base in Belle Reve, LOUISIANA to GOTHAM CITY in time to save them.

Then cue up the WORST dialogue ever…we’re talking Scott Lobdell, Ann Nocenti and Dan Jurgens rolled into one:

Waller to Deadshot: “Last I checked, I didn’t give you PERMISSION to die!”
Deadshot: “Amanda Waller, I never thought I’d be HAPPY to see you!”
Waller: “Don’t worry Deadshot, that’ll change QUICKLY…”

Shakespearean.

They all escape, and then Waller tells them they’re on a new mission, Deadshot says NO! Not until you tell me what’s going on! She reminds him of the Nanobomb! He calls her bluff! (For about the 5 trillionth time! No one is going to believe you any more if you don’t follow through Mandy.)

Then Waller…TURNS OFF ALL THEIR BOMBS!
Tells them this is personal, that she used to be on a team like them, Team 7…Kurt Lance is her FRIEND! And she’s going after him NO MATTER WHAT!

But why turn off our bombs?
Because I NEED YOU. And I will remember this if you help me.

And yet, no one shoots her dead right there, even though all of them could escape and be gone.

Then she makes all small talky with Harley, who starts to have a problem with Harleen in her brain and the 2 are fighting for control….

They’re attacked…by the Swamp Thing ripoffs that Regulus mentioned in passing last volume…

Waller is out! Deadshot says the only smart thing in recent memory, that OK, she’s not dead, they saved her, now let’s all fuck right off.

King Shark and Harley then tell him that he gave his word, and his word is his bond…Really??? REALLY? HE’s A FUCKING ASSASSIN! A PATALOGICAL LIAR! HE ALREADY DIED A BUNCH OF TIMES! HIS WORD IS NOTHING!

He’s about to leave anyhow when…”THE Unknown Soldier!” appears and tells him he better keep his word, because even scum like Deadshot should do that…

(And when he introduces himself, his words look like a logo!)

Uknowny (Imma call him dat) then says that he’s super fast and jacked and stronger than all of them and they’re gonna do what Waller wanted…Deadshot calls bullshit…

AND SHOCKINGLY!!!! UKNOWY SHOOTS DEADSHOT DEAD! WITH HIS OWN GUN! AGAIN! JUST LIKE THE END OF THE VERY LAST VOLUME! OH MY GOD! HOW ORIGINAL! I NEVER EVER EVER SAW THAT COMING! YOU JUST REDID THE SAME THING AGAIN! THAT IS SOOO EDGY!…for 1992.

Oh and they all look on with shock as Unknowy proclaims himself the new “Team Leader” of the Suicide Squad.

Tune in NEXT volume, when I predict that Deadshot…will be shot. dead. with his own gun. at the end of Volume 4!

I actually found this comically bad.


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Review: Suicide Squad Vol. 2 – Basilisk Rising, by Adam Glass (Half Empty)

Suicide Squad, Vol. 2: Basilisk RisingSuicide Squad, Vol. 2: Basilisk Rising by Adam Glass
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

OK, this was my first read for our “EVIL” Week Shallow Buddyread.


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Suicide Squad has always seemed like something I ‘d want to read, a Dirty Dozen comic book with baddies who might actually be anti-heroes…

Sadly, this New 52 version is just a bunch of c-listers running around with Deadshot and Harley. Yes, they’re both back, even though it seemed like they both died last volume…or so I recall..

Harley is a bit stable here because somehow the trauma of Mista J’s face-off made Dr. Quinzel’s personality take the lead…not that it changes much because it seems like Harleen is just a slightly less unbalanced version of Harley.

Deadshot is his usual I trust no one guy, and that probably makes him the smartest one here…which ain’t saying much. Thankfully there’s not any of that poor little sick girl stuff that made Anne vomit from Vol. 1.

We also get more of King Shark, El Diablo, Black Spider, and Light. Oh joy. I’m pretty sure that Deadshot kills light because she is going to kill Waller, and he wants the pleasure for himself…

They spend the first half the book running after The Resurrection Man, Mitch Shelley…I read the old RM books from the early 90s, but not the recent New 52 version…seems not much is different, he’s still got the strange girl assassins after him, and they come up against SS to see who takes him…people manipulate, we get the usual pissing contest between covert government agencies, and in the end, he escapes. Or so we’re lead to think.

Then they get after Basilisk, the Hydra-ripoff agency of evil, like SPECTRE or whatnot. Some D-lister blows up the plane they’re on, and they mostly die, except our main characters, who arrive on a desert island…which just happens to be populated with cannibals…they’re saved…by Basilisk…led by Capt. Boomerang!!! Who, if you recall, was in the SS and died in volume 1 for being a traitor…oh…
And he works for the head of Basilisk, who’s named Regulus or some shit? Sounds like Romulus…the mysterious Wolverine comics figure…anyhow, turns out that Black Spider is the SS traitor for Basilisk, but then it turns out that Boomerang was actually planted in Basilisk by Waller to double agent spy…Deadshot kills Black Spider, but it’s only his clone…or something…

Anyhow, a bunch of people die.

Then we get some stupid backstory about Waller before SS and as a field op, where she goes against Regulus, but we get a hint that they were on a team called Team 7 or some shit and worked together before that broke up…then he releases some sort of bomb (much like the Terragen Mist bomb in Inhumanity that Black Bolt released) which makes people into Metahumans, or kills them…
this is what leads Waller to want to form the Suicide Squad.

Follow me at all? No? Good.

Everyone turns on everyone, and mostly everyone is a double agent, or sleeper agent, except Deadshot and Harley (surprisingly, the only ones who aren’t C-D or F-list villains/nobodies…oh and on top of that…the Yoyo, team member who was eaten by King Shark in Vol 1? Ya he didn’t die, just sat in the shark’s intestines for a month, until getting out…wants to kill Waller, who says that she just helped him unlock more powers…

Oh and in case you forgot? Every 3rd page, we are reminded that all the SS members have nano-bombs in their necks to be killed if they don’t follow the script.

So that’s this one…until next one, where everyone will be a triple agent…ya.

Like Sam well said, this is a 90s action movie with a D-lister directed by the equivalent…Lorenzo Lamas in Cinemax’s Suicide Squad, directed by the shambling corpse of Ed Wood.

SOOO Bad, it’s nearly good. I am mildly interested in Deadshot, and I like Harley (boobies!) that and the library sent me all the volumes at once, and it’s EVIL WEEK! So I will keep reading this, taking 3 for the team, who I’m sure I’ll double cross 4 times and die twice before the end of this…


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