Wednesday, August 21, 2013

SPOILERS: Red Hood and the Outlaws #23

In the deserts of the Arabian peninsula, the Untitled can feel that they've grown closer to their goal, as Roy wages war on the League of Assassins, but there is another with them, a cloaked, normal human, who warns the Untitled not to underestimate Jason, amnesiac or not.

Within the League's city, Roy manages to thwart December Graystone's magic, having prepared for some magic with counter charms, and even manages to screw up Cheshire's teleporting ability, despite her grabbing of his junk.

The Untitled watch the action unfold through a portal, as the leader Drakar, comments to his human guest about the debt they owe him/her for making it all possible, but the praise is cut short, as they all witness a stream of fire shoot across the sky, heading for the League's city.

Back in the city, Jason confronts Roy, trying to get him to stop, but Roy laughs off the idea that the amnesiac is telling him he doesn't know what he's doing, and attempts to blow the fountain, only to have Kori stop him. Then, because it's not already enough of a clusterfuck, the assassin Rictus attacks Kori, despite her actually sort of being on his side, while Jason, Bronze Tiger and Shiva kick the crap out of Roy.

Despite having the shit beat out of him, Roy manages to shoot a small explosive tipped arrow, to uncover the fountain that the League had hidden. With both intruders dealt with, Bronze Tiger orders their throats slit, only to have Jason stop them, saying he'll agree to lead the League if they're spared, so instead, they're locked away. Before Roy and Kori are taken away, Kori tries to make Jason remember just what he's doing to her by putting her in chains, but also lets him know how to defeat the Untitled. He asks why she's helping him, but Roy answers for her, by telling Jason it's because they're friends.

With Roy and Kori being dragged off, the remaining assassins and Jason prepare for battle, as the All Blades appear in Jason's hands, as he hears Ducra's voice, telling him what to do with them, which will have to happen quick, as the Untitled have finally penetrated the League's city.


The Good:

After a rough first few issues, this story is coming together pretty well. As I said with the previous issue, I do enjoy the Untitled actually being expanded upon, rather than forgotten, and the integration of the League of Assassins really allows me to become invested, given that we're dealing with characters I know. A little more mystery gets added to the pot this time around, with whoever is helping the Untitled. I hope it's someone other than Hugo Strange, because I have a hard time believing he'd know all these secrets about the League and what not, but we'll have to see. Roy's banter was also pretty entertaining, especially his second encounter with Cheshire.

The Bad:

I just can't get into Gopez's art. It takes away so much enjoyment for me. I get the book was probably in a tough spot once Mico Suayan left before completing a single issue, but the fact that this is what the book stuck with afterwards is really disappointing. Yes, Ray McCarthy's inks make thinks work a bit better, but the other two inkers don't do as much good for the pencils as he does. Meanwhile, there are just parts that no amount of inking would fix, like how Roy has a mullet now, there's a difference between long hair and a mullet, you know. Then there's Kori's incorrect costume, which I noticed while writing this post. It's much more inline with her Pre New 52 costume, with her chest straps (I guess that's what you'd call them?) going all the way down from her neck to hips, rather than gong off to the back (which does happen in some panels). I mean, how many issues are we into this run? And all the sudden a completely incorrect costume is drawn now? But I think the one thing that bothers me the most about the art, is that there's nothing unique about it. There are countless amounts of comic book artists working in the industry today, and the best ones are those who define their style, and are instantly recognizable, even if influenced by others... there's none of that here, it's just generic comic book art, nothing special, nothing unique. This is one of those books, where every time there are new solicits, I instantly look to see if a change has been made, but I've been disappointed every month.

The Bottom Line:

While I've enjoyed the battle that has been brewing between the League of Assassins and the Untitled, all while the Outlaws are caught in between, what's really holding this book back for me now is the art. Comics are a collaborative process, and work best when writing compliments the art and vis versa, but the art here is doing nothing for an otherwise solid story.



  1. it was fun, but man that art is just so bad it hurts my eyes

  2. I didn't find the art to be as distracting. It certainly wasn't good but it didn't hamper my enjoyment