SUICIDE SQUAD (2019) #6 Review

SUICIDE SQUAD (2019) #3 Review

Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Bruno Redondo
Color Artist: Adriano Lucas
Letterer: Wes Abbott

Review by Max Byrne

Crash, bang, wallop, what an issue! Suicide Squad #3 is a thoroughly entertaining read from start to finish, continuing the extremely high level set by Tom Taylor‘s preceding two issues. a perfect storm of wanton violence, character development and a great showcase for the skillsets of the new members of Task Force X.

Following on from the cliffhanger ending of issue #2, the mission is still very much in the balance, after the explosive actions of Osita put the team in jeopardy. I applaud Taylor’s choice regarding the decision made by Deadshot in this immediate aftermath. It shows the nice handle that he has on the character and his moral compass. Whilst a deeply flawed and at times ruthless killer, the arc that Lawton goes on here is very consistent with the rich history of the character, it feel authentic and right.

This issue is very much the territory of the new team members, with the old stalwarts Harley and Deadshot pushed slightly out of the spotlight. Again, this is the correct choice. Long time readers of the Squad’s exploits will already familiar with what their favourites bring to the table, so by giving the new breed a push, the process of getting to know them is made easier and quicker. Don’t get too attached though, as we all know that the Squad line up has always been somewhat…transient.

The aforementioned new characters are a real breath of fresh air, adding a fresh coat of paint to the proceedings. Powered up newbies such as Jog, Deadly Six and Fin are classics in the making, with so much scope for future missions and adventures heavily featuring them. So new and exciting are they, that in the words of Harley Quinn, “I’m feelin’ a little redundant”. Deadly Six is a favourite of mine, his ability to physically channel the seven deadly sins on to his enemies is really vivid. Whilst his refusal to channel lust due to it being “icky” is noble, one gets the feeling that it won’t be long before everybody is feeling the love!

The art on offer here is once again top notch. Bruno Redondo is doing a masterful job on this title, his work is so full of life and has a hugely kinetic quality to it. Action scenes really explode off the page and take on an almost 3D quality. Taylor certainly has a proven track record when it comes to writing blockbuster action, and he has found the perfect collaborator here in Redondo. I am a huge fan what they are doing here, and hope that the two consistently work together as a Snyder/Capullo style package.

Verdict

Another high quality issue, with plenty to sink your teeth into. A bigger picture is certainly being painted here, with the identity of Lok’s cruel superior destined to end up being a jaw dropping moment. As the issues roll on, it’s clear that along with the “mission of the week” style adventures, we are going to be taken along a journey to bigger things. With the promise of a certain Aussie character returning in issue 4, the team is shaping up very nicely indeed. For a veteran title, the re-invigoration here has been tangible and Suicide Squad is certainly worthy of a seat at the top table.

9/10


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Suicide Squad (DC Comics)

SUICIDE SQUAD (2019) #2 review

“There’s No Love In Team!

Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Bruno Redondo
Color Artist: Adriano Lucas
Letterer: Wes Abbott
Review by Max Byrne

“Meet the new boss, same as the old boss” sang Roger Daltrey back in 1971. Well, those words were certainly prophetic when examined through the prism of Suicide Squad #2. With issue #1 seeing the stalwart Amanda Waller stepping down from her position as the head of Task Force X, this new instalment is the start of the Lok era. One hell of a mysterious taskmaster, enigmatic and cold as ice, one certainly feels that Tom Taylor is going to have a lot of fun peeling back the layers with this character as the weeks unfold. With a blank canvas to work with regarding his backstory, it does feel as though this will help with the sense of re-invigoration this title has already been given.

Speaking of which, the new recruits to the team have certainly begun to make their presence felt in a big way. Throwing in a generous helping of vibrant, fresh characters along with the old favorites is the equivalent of throwing a hand grenade into an erupting volcano, carnage will inevitably ensue. The combustible nature of the thrown together Squad is palpable, as Taylor does an excellent job of loading up his dialogue with tense exchanges, barbed comments and simmering rage.

A prime example is the entertaining and venomous exchanges between Fin and Shark, following Shark’s ravenous devouring of Fin’s twin brother in issue #1. Taylor manages to illicit a great deal of sympathy for Fin, having lost his telepathically linked twin, leaving him bereft and confused. With Shark revelling in his murderous act, it’s literally just the sub-dermal explosives that are keeping them from tearing each other apart. The dark humour that befits both the title and the author is very present too, as Taylor finds the humour in the most dark and violent situations.

With such an action-oriented title, an artist is needed that can provide the snap, crackle and pop required. In Bruno Redondo, DC have certainly found the right man for the job. His knack for drawing a combat scene is unparalleled. With panel upon panel filed with hails of bullets, crunching blows and explosions galore, Redondo has certainly got his hands full. I’ve mentioned this before, but I adore the swathes of onomatopoeic words that accompany the action, with a liberal helpings of “bang”, “brrrt” and “cruunch” present at every turn.

With a cliffhanger of an ending that changes the dynamic of the team dramatically, as well as setting up a future reckoning, the fates of Deadshot and Osita are certainly going to be on the line once the truth of the mission’s denouement comes to the attention of Lok. Seeing a mission-oriented man like Floyd Lawton taking the action he did at the end of the issue was a real shock, and I, for one, am certainly looking forward to seeing where they go with the truth as the future rolls on.

Conclusion

Suicide Squad #2 is a high quality continuation of the sterling work done by Taylor et al in issue #1. Fast paced and fun, with a deeper level of pathos behind the body count, I’m extremely optimistic for the future of this book. With the title once again becoming a hot property, it won’t be long before it is up there with our favorites as a true flagship title for DC.

8/10


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SUICIDE SQUAD (2019) #1 review

Review by Max Byrne

  • Writer: Tom Taylor
  • Artist: Bruno Redondo
  • Colour Artist: Adriano Lucas
  • Letterer: Wes Abbott

Following on from the white hot success of DCeased, a title that captured both the headlines and the imaginations of comic book fans the world over, it must surely have been the case that Tom Taylor could have had his pick of whatever DC property he wanted to write next. With his stock at an all time high, Taylor’s next move was guaranteed to be big news. In a move that is mutually beneficial both for himself and DC, he has taken on Suicide Squad, a title that, whilst hugely well known and the subject of one feature film and another due to drop in 2021, had seen its most recent run cancelled after a mere 50 issues.

That cancellation and subsequent resurrection has given Taylor carte blanche to take any direction he sees fit to do, and Suicide Squad #1 really does set his stall out for what kind of title this is going to be moving forward. This is darkly humorous, extremely gorey and very knowing and self aware stuff. In other words, a perfectly pitch reboot of the title! From the wonderful cover art that literally spells out that “By the end of this issue…half of this team’ll be dead!” to the liberal helpings of sudden and graphic deaths, this is highly deferential material that almost knowingly winks at its audience.

Very much a mixture of old and new, Taylor spends the first half of the issue introducing us all to a motley crew of ne’er do wells and rotters, allowing us to get familiar with them before the reaper’s axe starts to fall. Osita, Chaos Kitten, Scale & Fin, Jog and Wink all make their debuts and arrive as fully formed, distinctly individual characters. Part of a disparate band of terrorists named The Revolutionaries, they have cut a swathe across the planet, destroying Oil Fields, freeing illegals from detention centres and acquiring nuclear warheads. Always soembody with a keen eye for new talent, it isn’t long before Amanda Waller and Task Force X make it their mission of the day to capture them alive (or dead if needs be) and make them the newest Squad recruits.

It is this collision of teams that provides the catalyst for the onset of utter carnage, as old familiar favourites such as Deadshot and Harley Quinn collide with the new breed. The mixture of Taylor’s snappy dialogue and Bruno Redondo’s vibrant and graphically violent artwork make the perfect storm. Each character’s demise is accompanied by snarky exchanges of dialogue that caused this reader to laugh out loud on more than one occasion. The colour work of Adriano Lucas works beautifully too, every panel leaps off the page through the use of bright, bold colours. A dour, cerebral comic this is not, this is more of an explosion of fun.

Suicide Squad #1 is everything I had expected it to be and more. No stranger to killing off characters in the most imaginative of ways, Taylor has laid down a marker here that bodes very well for the future of the book. Always managing to stay just about on the right side of going too far over the top, this is going to be a title that consistently entertains. The transient nature of the squad line-up means that there will be constant ins and outs, maybe even on a weekly basis, so whatever you do, don’t get too attached to anybody….

8/10


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