After the Red Hood awesomeness that was Future’s End Month, I had forgotten how mediocre the issues beforehand were.  For anyone who hasn’t read those previous issues in a while, there was a terrorist attack on Washington D.C., the Outlaws and S.H.A.D.E. got into a little spat, and Kori tracked down a former alien slaver who promptly killed himself with one of Roy’s arrows.  Then, Kori went home and ended up on some sort of drug, while Jason and Roy were left holding the bag, or in this case the dead body.

That is not, however, where this issue starts off.  Instead of dealing with the immediate aftermath of Kori’s actions we are transported to some indeterminate time in the future, where Roy is severely burnt and in a hospital in New Orleans.  We jump back to the slaver’s house in California and Jason and Roy have to deal with the body.  Here’s the first of the things that made little sense to me in this issue.

Spoiler

So Roy has an arrow that completely destroys a dead body based on a DNA sample of said body?  How is that not been used to straight-up murder someone.  One strand of DNA and the body completely disappears?  That makes no sense but is terrifying as hell.  And Jason calls him “Batman-Brilliant.”  There’s like, no context for that.  This whole series Roy has just been brilliant, making nanomachines and stuff that is insanely complex, and making them seemingly from nothing.  It’s just all very convenient.

They return home with a ship they stole from a villain who hasn’t been mentioned for like 20 issues (Crux, who I think is from issue 7 because I’m not going that deep in my comic-vault to find out) and find Kori passed out on the beach.  There’s some hints that she’s using: hunger, the shivering, unusual moods, and avoiding all of Roy’s questions.  Jason has tracked down the terrorist to New Orleans, and the three of them come across some sort of shack filled with dudes with stars on their shoulders?  I was confused and it all just felt forced and random.

This leads me to the second weird thing that happens.

Spoiler

Kori rushes things and gets knocked from the fight, and Jason tells Roy to go help her even though there are like two dozen bad guys who just beat up an alien who is described as a “solar flare.”

  So now we get not even one page of Jason kicking some ass and then the third thing that confuses me happens.
Spoiler

Jason’s like “Welp, I guess I can’t win.  Let me take this totally random thing that is attached to this guy’s ankle and inject it.  Because that makes sense…”

While all that goes on, Roy and Kori argue, and we find out how Roy got in the hospital from the beginning, with what might be the funniest noise of all time. 

Spoiler

“IIIIIEEEEEE!” Try saying that out loud.

There’s not really any spoilers, seeing as how the main points were all mentioned in the article, but Scott Lobdell’s story was really weak this month.  It just didn’t go anywhere, things just happened.  It felt very passive and rushed, like the writing team was just trying to finish the issue.  Also, the cover makes zero sense…should just point that out.  The artwork Geraldo Borges and Paul Neary was pretty decent.  I still don’t like that artists can’t decide whether or not to give Jason eyes in his mask or not, but for the love of God just pick one.

Spoiler

  • We get an Oliver Queen sighting! Look at that! Ollie visits Roy in the hospital and Jason is ready to put a bullet in him. He also called him Roy’s “drinking buddy” which I guess highlights Roy’s previous addictions?
  • Kori burns Roy when she rockets off at the end of the issue. I don’t get how her flames are different from whenever else she flies.

Favorite Quote: “Don’t let the fangs fool you.  He’s just an egghead with bat wings.” – Jason Todd.

Recommended If…

  • You’ve been keeping up since last arc.
  • You don’t mind a very average issue.

Overall:

This arc is supposed to deal with the drug use of each character, whether it’s Kori and Jason’s current/future use or Roy’s previous use.  Frankly, I didn’t get any kind of feeling from this issue.  It was decently drawn but poorly written, a staple of the Scott Lobdell era of Red Hood and the Outlaws.

SCORE: 4/10