Wednesday, May 15, 2013

SPOILERS: Red Hood and the Outlaws #20

Well, Jason still doesn't have his memories, and Roy is still pretty pissed about that, demanding that S'aru give Jason his memories back. S'aru asks Roy and Kori to see it from Jason's perspective, showing them both just how shitty Jason's life was, but Roy isn't convinced, bringing up the fact that the three of them had pretty good times, so if Jason just wanted the bad parts gone, why doesn't he remember his friends... Well, about that...

Well, turns out that Jason met a drunken lowlife Roy the night he found out his mother was still alive, which lead ultimately to his death. As S'aru explains it, memories are like webs, and you pull one, the rest that are connected come with it. Roy's a little surprised, but S'aru tells him that Jason kept a lot of things from him, showing the time Jason spent with the League of Assassins (which Cheshire and a very human Bronze Tiger, who finds some creepy looking gem). Safe to say, the time with the League didn't turn out too well, which leaves Roy feeling really bad.

Kori butts in to point out that ones history can't haunt someone if they don't let it, but S'aru fires back with the fact that Kori is hiding quite a bit in terms of her memories, revealing that she has absolutely no problem remembering things, even though her mind works a bit different. Kori starts to get pissed, but  S'aru continues, claiming she has selective amnesia, actively repressing some memories, exposing a fight between her and Dick for all of them to see. Roy, meanwhile, is all "WTF," having a hard time to deal with everything, while a mind wiped Jason tries to convince him to let it be.

Roy has nothing of it, and uses a tranq to knock Jason out. S'aru points out that the only person who'd be able to get Jason's memories back, is Jason himself if he willing asks for them. S'aru then pretty much just gets bored with them, and transports them out of the All-Caste's garden. In the snow, with a knocked out cold, mind wiped Jason, Roy freaks out a bit when Kori asks him what the plan is. There is none. Roy's world just pretty much shattered.

Elsewhere, Essence and Ducra watch on, as S'aru pops up. Turns out S'aru and Ducra planned this for a reason, but Essence rejects her mother's suggestion of having faith, claiming she can see their future as clearly as they both can, and death is coming for them.

Elsewhere, in Seattle, some nameless assassin goes over a bounty on the Outlaws' heads, is stuck with a few arrows, and Green Arrow figures its time to save his former "friend" from getting killed, once again.


The Good:


The Bad:

Just going to get the easy one out of the way, just don't like the art, mainly the faces. They're just awkward looking to me. Same issue with Kori's hair eyebrows. Figured out that it was originally in Kenneth Rocafort's design sketch, which Gopez is probably going off of, but I think Rocafort drew her like that for a grand total of like three pages. Also, Gopez draws some absolutely huge arrow quivers, larger than Roy and Oliver's backs, not a deal breaker... just weird... Oh, and Roy has a mullet. Ew.

Then there's everything surrounding Jason. To put it bluntly, I don't like it. I had hopes that we'd make it out of this issue with Jason getting his memories back, but nope. While there is mention of a long game in play, I don't see a lot of room for hope here. What bugs me the most is the fact that if you could praise this series for one thing, it is that it gave Jason Todd some legitimate character progression, and with this turn of events (as well as Batman and Red Hood #20) all of it has been seemingly thrown out the window. When I put this issue down and thought about that, it felt like the nearly two years of stories that came before this were a waste of my time. It was almost insulting in a way. Then, lets say Jason gets his memories back... then what's the point?!

Then there's Kori... Oh boy, and think James Tynion really inadvertently messed this one up. Basically, Kori went from being defined by no man, to her living a lie every day of her life, defined by the men in it. It's almost worse than people thinking she's a "sex goldfish." It's more than a single step back in terms of characterization and progression, this is the kind of shit certain blogs feed on, and the worst part is I don't think the end result was the intent, but that's what happened.

The Bottom Line:

This was a hard review to write, as it's the first thing from Tynion I really didn't enjoy, and given that he has been nothing but kind to me, I kind of felt like crap writing it, but I have to be honest. I just don't like or agree with most of what goes down in this issue. The worst part is, I can distinctly remember the fact that the fun of this title wouldn't be lost was mentioned numerous times, but these past two issues have been nothing close to fun, and that sucks. That being said, the only redeeming quality I found was the fact that the doorway for this to be fixed was left open, or so it seems... I hope it is, but I hope the damage that is left in its wake isn't too much. I really, really hope the annual salvages a lot in two weeks.


1 comment :

  1. the art is getting SLIGHTLY better, but still sucks... the recap was boring and felt like wasted time, but I get that people that just jumped in the title kind of needed it. I really, REALLY hope this is going somewhere because this wasn't fun, nor action-packed and Jason losing his memory will destroy the team's dinamic which was the best part of this series in the first place. If the annual doesn't fix this, I'll just drop this book for good.