If you don’t want the big reveal from the last issue to be spoiled for you, then stop reading.

I’m serious, don’t read any further.

Ok, but if a major plot point gets spoiled, it’s your own fault.

I’m not kidding…

No… seriously… even the title of this issue is a spoiler.

Fine…

 

Midnighter #7 “Prometheus”
Written by Steve Orlando
Art by ACO
Colors by Romulo Fajardo Jr

Let’s just jump right into this. The entire first arc of Midnighter has been a cat and mouse game, with Midnighter playing both the cat and the mouse the whole time. In the first issue, the God Garden was attacked, and equipment, as well as information pertaining to Midnighter’s true identity, was stolen. After uncovering clues issue to issue, it was finally revealed that the mastermind behind it all was Prometheus.

Pretending to be an ordinary man, Prometheus created the alter ego, Matt, to get close to Midnighter. Becoming M’s love interest, he watched Midnighter. Studied him. And after he’d gained the intelligence that he needed, he struck. Like M, he too has enhancements that help him gain the upper hand, and after finding a way to shut down Midnighter’s tech, it’s Prometheus’ battle to lose.

Last month left off with Matt stabbing Midnighter near the heart, leaving him to bleed out before revealing that he’s really Prometheus. This month, we pick up from there. Midnighter and Prometheus are still in the house that was apparently Matt’s childhood. We quickly find out that’s not the case, and get a glimpse into Matt/Prometheus’ actual childhood. For those of you that are familiar with the character, I’ll go ahead and let you know that there aren’t any major changes.

I was curious as to how this battle was going to unfold, and what the end result would be.

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I fully expected Prometheus to dominate Midnighter considering M’s current state, but I wasn’t sure if this would ultimately be a fight until the end, if Prometheus would toy around with Midnighter to continue the mind games, or if there would be another outcome. The final result is brutal, but an ending that I found quite satisfying. In the midst of it all, not only do we find closure in our current arc, but we start many others plots as well – something that is sure to pay off if this book is allowed to continue its run.

 

The Art: I’m a big fan of ACO’s art. Yes, I will agree with some of you that it can be very crowded, and that there is a lot going on within each page and panel… but I don’t think ACO draws these books from the perspective of reading from a physical page. I’ve spoken about Comixology’s Native Guided View, and Midnighter appears to benefit from that more than most books. It feels as though the book is drawn with this in mind, and that ACO adapts his art to this type of feature. My reading experience with this book is so drastically different between the two standards that it’s pretty amazing.

I also want to applaud the fight itself. This is one hell of a brawl, and it’s captured in a way that is unique to ACO’s style. When Midnigther and Prometheus go at it, they use anything they can get their hands on (including toaster ovens and door knobs), and destroy doors, walls and ceilings/ floors. ACO always pinpoints very specific details in his fights, and he continues that here, but also alternates the focus from panel to panel in some cases:  One panel will show a blow from the fight, and the next panel will show the destruction of their surroundings following their blows – each focal point colored with a different tone. If you can’t already tell, I thought it was brilliant.

And while I enjoy the rough pencils of ACO’s work – I strongly feel that the grittiness adds to the tone of this book – I’m still bothered by the way he draws mouths.

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Breakdowns can be found in the spoiler tag.

Spoiler

The Good:  Prometheus/ Midnighter. I mentioned this last month, but these to create the perfect yin & yang. They are very much the same, and they are both very different. Both have been modified with technology that enhances their physical and mental abilities, and both use that for their cause. While Midnighter is far from being a hero, he is a proponent of justice, and Prometheus is the complete antithesis.

Identity. I love the development that occurs pertaining to Midnighter’s identity. Prometheus knows everything about who Midnighter really is, downloads it into his cerebral software, and destroys the source information. Without M even realizing it, Prometheus has filled and decorated the house they’re in with pieces and elements of Midnighter’s history and memories. He then mistakenly thinks that the knowledge will serve as leverage against Midnighter, thus saving his life… well not quite.

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I knew Midnighter wouldn’t die in this fight, but I was convinced he was going to be “defeated.” I thought Prometheus had the upper hand, and would continue to be a thorn in M’s side throughout this book. Much to my surprise, Midnighter gets the upper hand and beats the living crap out of Prometheus after he becomes overly confident and arrogant that he’s victorious. And then when I thought Midnighter was going to end Prometheus, he let him escape – a garuntee that he will be back, and will not take M for granted next time.

The unknown. For the first time in his life, Midnighter is questioning what he knows. Considering this character rules with confidence, this could be an interesting turn for who he is as a person. Because of recent events, he is fundamentally changed. He’s now going to question things that he never used to question. While that might be positive in some respects, it could also be negative in others.

The future. So much of what’s to come is set up in the last quarter of this book. We get reintroduced to Marina – a character that I’m really beginning to enjoy and appreciate, and someone we’ll hopefully see the full potential of over time. We also get to see the Apollo again as Midnighter leaves him a gift teasing M’s true identity, foreshadowing that he’ll play a larger roll in the near future.

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And if that weren’t enough, we have the immediate set-up of the next arc as Deadshot – under the direction of Amanda Waller – breaks into Spyral to steal the God Garden tech that Dick took after helping Midnighter in Russia… Needless to say, I’m excited!

The Bad:  There aren’t too many faults here. In some respects, the “payoff’ may feel a little lack luster to some, but I this is just a chapter of a much larger story that will continue to play out – very similar to how Valentine’s run on Catwoman was unfolding. Outside of that, and the weird teeth from ACO, I can’t complain.

Recommended If:

  • You want to see the outcome of Midnighter #6
  • You’re a fan of Prometheus.
  • You enjoy stories where the antagonist and protagonist are evenly matched.
  • You want a glimpse of what’s in the pipeline for Midnighter.

Overall:  Yet again, Orlando delivers a strong story full of action and suspense, while also managing to touch on the emotions and psyche of Midnighter. This issue has a little bit of everything, and should solidify current readers’ loyalty to this book considering the amazing tease of future plots. It’s clear Orlando is a big picture guy, so hopefully more people will pick up the book before it’s too late, otherwise we’re going to have another shameful incident where a quality book comes to an end way too soon (Gotham by Midnight, Valentine’s Catwoman).

SCORE: 8.5/10