It has been a strange year for the DCU, first many of the major superheroes have disappeared leaving second stringers to pick up the slack. One was in it for the fame and fortune, while another appeared on the scene wrapped in mystery. A dictator got married and softened, while a former president created new heroes with his Everyman Project. It was also a year where a tormented hero began a quest to find the answers, while cancer tore through one who asks a lot of questions. As the final seconds tick down to the New Year, an optimistic outlook is not expected.

01.jpgThe Suicide Squad has a mission; bring the Black Marvels in, and each member’s crimes will be wiped clean. In case you missed it, the members of this current incarnation include Captain Boomerang, Persuader (not the one from 1000 years in the future), Atom Smasher, Count Vertigo, Plastique, and The Electrocutioner. And as we see in the first couple of pages – Time is Broken.

Panel one shows Week 34, Day 1 as the Suicide Squad monitors Black Adam and Isis flying toward Titan Tower to pick up Osiris, yet by the time they attack, it is already day 3. This is on of those moments where you have to wonder if the 52 team are just messing with our minds, if there really is something to the jump, or if it was just a mistake that no one caught.

After last week’s reveal that the Black Marvels are trying to be good, the Teen Titans have temporarily allowed Osiris to join the team, and he is super happy to be doing good. That’s all about to change when The Suicide Squad attacks.

Taken completely by surprise, Isis and Osiris are quickly overwhelmed by the squad, with Plastique and The Electrocutioner fighting Osiris, while Persuader (not the one from 1000 years in the future) uses his atomic axe to hack away at Isis. Black Adam is more than strong enough to take down Atom Smasher, and is very concerned about his family being injured.

All along Osiris has tried to be a source of good, not wanting to do anything to damage the reputation the family has struggled to rebuild since October. Isn’t there some saying about the path to Hell being paved with good intentions?

We also have to remember Osiris is the god of life, death, and fertility, and when The Persuader’s atomic axe (also not from 1000 years in the future), begin to actually cut and hurt Isis, Osiris attacks with a vengeance.

So much for good intentions…

Since they were attacked in the middle of the forest, no one saw that little outburst, right? Well, behind every recent incarnation of the Suicide Squad, sits Amanda Waller. Instead of bringing in the Black Marvel family, Waller was just looking for video of them acting out to use against them.

A couple of interesting points arise here that could help flesh out the rest of the 52 storyline. First, although we know Boomer is seen in The Outsiders one year later, it is unclear if this is the mission that wiped his slate clean. Knowing Waller, my guess is going to be a resounding “No”, which means we’ll probably see more Suicide Squad before the year’s out.

The second point that arises from this confrontation is, “Who told Waller to do this?” In order to find the answer to this question, we have to jump ahead to some of the other OYL titles. Suicide Squad has done many missions for Checkmate over the years, and in the current run, we know Waller is involved with the organization. As we saw several weeks ago in 52, Checkmate is currently under U.N. control. The first issue of the new J.S.A. had a box saying “After World War III”, and we know Rip Hunter wrote the same thing in his bunker, so could this be the first salvo that starts the DCU toward that event? Would releasing this footage anger the world enough to attack Kahndaq? Perhaps Black Adam shouldn’t have upset the members of the Freedom of Power Treaty who could come to his aid.

The question of “Who is Supernova” has driven Lex Luthor to such an extreme, that he has had his men kidnap Clark Kent and inject him with a truth serum. The problem is, you have to ask the right questions.

Just days before New Year’s Eve, Mercy is escorting the female members of Infinity, Inc. on a shopping spree, but thanks to a ploy set up by Oracle and Black Canary, the girls are split up long enough for John Irons to confront Natasha about the Everyman Project.

Do you get the feeling we’ve been here before? Talk about a story plot that is spinning its wheels. This sequence makes no sense, and really has me frustrated. If you go through all of the trouble of isolating your niece, why drop all the clues and tell her to figure it out for herself? Why not just come out and say the powers are temporary, or that Lex Luthor has the power to turn them off? This is something The Question would pull, but not Steel.

Speaking of The Question, it looks like he is breathing his last. It’s New Year’s Eve and Renee has moved Vic to the hospital to live out his final moments. As the countdown begins, Vic begins to sing Danny Boy, and we cut to an angry Lex Luthor putting his finger on a trigger button.

The Good

  • It was too good to last
  • A brief appearance by Oracle and Black Canary
  • Once again Lex is one bad muth– SHUT YOUR MOUTH – I’m just talking about Lex

The Bad

  • Bye Bye Vic?
  • Teenagers, you can’t get anything through their heads, so you better spell it out for them
  • Broken time is
  • Next week – Zero hour?

In the classic three act structure, this issue brings an end to Act Two in a dramatic way. If this were a theatre production, Lex pushing the button would have been immediately followed by Lights Out or Curtain Drop. All of the pieces/players are in place, and the results of their actions are going to play out in a most dramatic way over the next couple of weeks.

Was this the best issue of the year? Not really. Was it entertaining? Yes. Was there a lot of Pathos? Of course. Am I mad that my next comic shipment will be delayed by three days because of weather, holidays, and Presidential orders? Damn straight.

Parting Shot
Discuss this issue in the Major Spoilers 52 Forum.


About Author

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment. You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...


Leave A Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.