Last time we visited the world of Irredeemable, we reviewed the trade paperback which collected the first four issues of this series. The trade followed that worldâ€™s greatest hero, The Plutonian, after he has decided that he has had enough of what he sees as an ungrateful world. Since then, there have been some developments in the Irredeemable world, and our beleaguered heroes still do not seem to have much hope.
We enter now just as we left the last issue. The heroes have had to flee their base after a rogue Modeus android activated an old Plutonian SOS beacon. Urging the other heroes to leave, Charybdis stays behind to buy them time and to possibly get revenge for the death of his brother, Scylla, with whom he shared super powers. Since his brotherâ€™s death, Charybdis seems to have lost his powers and seems to be suffering from survivorâ€™s guilt. As the last issue ends, Charybdis tells the Plutonian that he knows he was responsible for the Sonic Plague that was killing children a few years prior. While the brothers had been helping him with the clean-up of the plague at the research lab where it all started, Charybdis had discovered something that he now realizes was a SOS transmitter geared for the Plutonian. He confronts the Plutonian with the knowledge, saying that there was no reason for them to have such a thing unless it was to call the Plutonian specifically if something went wrong, which it had. The Plutonian knew more than he let on.
Meanwhile, we find the surviving heroes still exploring the Plutonianâ€™s secret hide-out, which just happens to be at the heart of an active volcano. They find a bizarre room filled with the skeletons of children, completely clothed and positioned as if they where at play. While they ponder the meaning of this, they are attacked by one of Plutonianâ€™s captives wielding a sort of plasma bazooka. Rushing for a place to hide, Betty Noir opens a door which leads to a bizarre shrine to her. Photos and statues of her in various stages of undress fill the room, and she quickly closes the door, telling her teammates it was a dead end. Seems like someone may have been a naughty girl and she knows it.
We get to see Kaidanâ€™s power in action as she tells the story of a vengeful spirit preparing to take the life of its enemy. We see a ghostly shape form and slice the attackerâ€™s weapon in half. Gilgamos is there to quickly subdue the defenseless attacker. Volt recognizes the attacker as a mystic named Enchantra. As she struggles against Gilgamos, she begins scream, â€œSo that sick bastardâ€™s just gonna pass me around to his friends now? Is that it?â€ Here we have another example of how warped the Plutonian has become. In a scene that would be comical if it where not so tragic, Gilgamos asks, â€œWhy is she dressed like my wife?â€ If you missed it, he is married to Betty Noir. Oh, Gilgamos, the secrets that have been kept from you! On the bright side, have they found another ally?
Back at the old headquarters, the Plutonian shows a flaw that is rather remarkable after everything he has done, the desire to be understood and explain his actions. We also get more of a glimpse into his mental state as he talks about how the events which lead up to the Sonic Plague took place. It seems that after they stopped the alien invasion, a particular scientist was adamant that he could discover breakthroughs in science if only he where allowed to study some of the alien tech that the Paradigm had hidden away. But, unlike others, Dr. Seabrook did not go away, be kept insisting that he could do good. Visiting him late one night, the Plutonian uses his powers to determine that the man is being honest; he does not want personal gain, only to help the world. Breaking for the decision that he and his teammates had made he gives the scientist a small device; it seems to be a sonic device, to study first. He also gives him a SOS signaling device to call him in case of any emergency.
Plutonian then proceeds to continue beating the powerless Charybdis. He calls him lucky, because with his brother dead he has no powers and could have had a regular life. He would not have to hear the constant drone of people in need. We flash back again to Plutonian and Kaidan shortly after they saved a luxury yacht from pirates. The yacht owner asks Plutonian to repair his vessel, and does not seem to understand that woodworking is not one of his array of powers. However, it does give us a chance to see another example of the mental state of the Plutonian. Losing his temper, he screams at the disgruntled yacht owner to leave him alone and flies off into space to land on the moon, where he is out of reach of the constant sound of people begging for help. Five, ten minutes tops, that is how long he stays on the moon enjoying the peace.
As he comes back down to Earth, he finds that the unthinkable has happened. During the time he was literally out of earshot, Dr. Seabrook had activated the SOS beacon. The Sonic Plague was in full swing by the time he arrived. If he had not indulged in that little piece of tranquility, the deaths of hundreds of children could have been avoided, or so he thinks. Finally, unloaded his burden to Charybdis, he prepares to finish it. As he warms up his heat vision, Charybdis tells him that he too has a secret. His dead brother, Scylla, had no powers, Charybdis was the source and he is at full strength! With that, he begins to make a stand against his foe. It looks like we may finally see the Plutonian in something resembling a fair fight.
While I am still enjoying this series, I am beginning to cool on it slightly. The constant signs of his unstable personality make you want to scream a his teammates that they did not care enough, but you finally realize that he may have just been damaged long before. Waid and company pull off another entertaining issue, but the last panel reveal may have been a little more exciting if I knew a little more about Charybdisâ€™s powers. As it is, the effect is dulled slightly by his depression over his brotherâ€™s death a few issues back.
Still enjoying the series, but I am waiting for a big turning point. Iâ€™m going 3 out of 5 stars. There can only be so many issues of despair before it starts to wear on your experience.