Review: Suicide Squad #16

STL040692.jpgIn the “Heroes and Villains” prologue-esque story in Part 1 of Rob WilliamsEarthlings on Fire” arc, our beloved Squad is serving up everything that we love about them & then some in a 21 page comic book and, we are all here for it. Williams packs so many tricks (courtesy of Amanda Waller and Lex Luthor) and treats (thanks to the Squad, their quips, their fighting, the villain cameos and Lex’s security system) into this jump off point for the latest story arc, that you’d think it was Halloween.

The issue finds the Squad on super secret mission to break into Lex’s vault while Waller keeps him busy upstairs. Between some very unfortunate for Boomerang’s appendages portals, courtesy of Enchantress, to the insane security measures that Lex has protecting his stuff, to the moment where we find out WHAT’S IN THE BOX! and what Waller needs it for, #16  is a page turner.

“Heroes and Villains” is a well-written ride through the intrigue behind the Squad. We are treated to a nice mental chess game between Waller and Lex, as well as some of Harley’s signature psychoanalysis of her teammates mid fight scenes. The issue is as intellectually intriguing as it is action packed and, funny. This issue is one of the most well-balanced comic books I’ve read in a while, Williams is like an alchemist of words, merging together every possible element needed to make sure there’s something for everyone without compromising quality.

Tony S. Daniel provided the sketches that gave way to Sandu Florea ink and lines that made this issue such a pretty page turner. It was like looking at a really good storyboard for an amazing movie. The lines, facial expressions, close ups, characters, and scenes all flowed together to creates something beautiful. You could see the action, the fear, the sadness and, even the wheels turning in the characters heads. There was so much magic in the artwork that in some panels you could even feel movement, making them an added layer to Williams’ intense story. Tomeu Morey handled the colors and you could see every spatter of blood in the battles, every vein in the gnarly alien monster arm, every side eye in the characters interactions. Every member of the art team did such an amazing job that every panel felt like it added and extra layer to the already gripping story. Even the lettering that Pat Brosseau provided, the switch ups in style and color based upon what was going on and who was speaking, helped to sway the mood and evoke real feelings and curiosity in the reader.

As a whole this issue is well put together, popcorn worthy, beautifully written, drawn and executed. The issue provided a level of intensity that reminded me why I sometimes have real feelings about imaginary characters. The entire team deserves a round of applause for their efforts and talent. I’m looking forward to seeing how Waller’s current plan plays out and how Luthor and her newly acquired, possible, Squad member, handles being on one of her leashes. No matter what happens next, I’m sure that Williams will bring the same heat and intensity he has been giving us from the beginning and that means that what’s to come is going to be nothing short of pure fire.

Story: Rob Williams Art: Tony S. Daniel, Sandu Florea, Tomeu Morey
Story: 9.1 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

DC Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review