It’s the final issue of Suicide Squad’s Most Wanted: Deadshot/ Katana, and I’m stoked to see how Buccellato wraps up Deadshot. As for Katana, if I could get away without reading or reviewing it, I would be one happy man. But alas, that didn’t happen. This month, Katana is the leading story, but since I despise this book, I’m going to go ahead and review Deadshot first!
I have to praise Buccellato for delivering a damn good book. I never read his run on The Flash, so I can’t include that in my comparison, but so far, this is easily the best work of his that I’ve ever read! I will admit that I did have some reservations about this final issue due to his track record of ending stories poorly, but was relieved to see that’s not the case here!
The last time we saw Deadshot, he’d escaped Belle Reve and was on a mission to get his daughter in hopes of leaving the states and the Suicide Squad behind. There was just one thing he needed to do first, and that was find and kill his imposter, Will. Unfortunately, Will was one step ahead of Deadshot, and managed to kidnap his daughter while Floyd was looking to score some vengeance. Men and their pride, huh? He should’ve bailed with Suchin the moment he had the chance, but if he had done that, I would only be covering Katana right now, so let’s consider his lapse of judgement a blessing.
Clearly the last thing you would ever want to do to Deadshot is piss him off. The dude is extremely dangerous, and there are times when he’s a little off his rocker. So what does Will do? He kills the people looking after Suchin, and kidnaps her. Note: kidnapping Deadshot’s daughter and killing innocent people she knew and loved is guaranteed to piss him off to the maximum level. Typically, I’d say the person stupid enough to do this would’ve just committed suicide, but Will is just as dangerous as Deadshot, and Suchin serves as a critical asset for him: leverage. Able to set his own terms, Will challenges Deadshot to a battle to determine who is the best between the two. And this isn’t just a pride thing for Will, it’s necessary for his career.
The issue plays out like a DC themed version of The Most Dangerous Game by Richard Connell. It’s fun, exciting, brutal, and energetic, even if you feel the outcome is obvious. To up the ante a little, Waller, has a role to play in this, and that alone brings its own interesting elements. What really drives this issue though, is the curiosity of how far Deadshot will go. We already know what he did to his mother, and saw, first hand, how he reacted to his parents’ knowledge of Suchin. This is, undoubtedly much worse, and you know that means he’s going to do everything he can to hurt Will.
Beyond the action and violence though, this issue does contain a lot of heart. While a number of villains and/or anti-heroes are getting their own runs, the one character that truly deserves an extended run in the spotlight is Deadshot. There’s so much that can, and should, be done with Floyd Lawton, and despite the fact that Suicide Squad built him into the character he is today, I don’t think it can take him to the limits he deserves. If Buccellato does anything with this book, he proves that!
The Art: Bogdanovic has worked his way into my heart, and has become one of my favorite artists! If you remember, when I first started covering this title, I complained about minor aspects of his work… Well not anymore. The work this guy does is outstanding, and I can’t imagine how different this book would’ve been without him. He should be incredibly proud of his work, and I hope to see him on other Bat related titles in the future.
Breakdowns can be found in the spoiler tag.
The Good: Deadshot vs Rookie.
I really enjoyed this fight, and actually found myself rooting for Deadshot. Yes, it was obvious he was going to win, but that didn’t make this any less enjoyable. He presented a great strategy when it didn’t appear as though there was much room for one, and the way he took Will out was epic! I’m sad to see Will go, but after everything he’d done to Deadshot, I’d be lying if I said his end wasn’t a little satisfying.
Suchin. I said this last week, but I love seeing Deadshot transition to dad mode! As messed up as his life might be, he’s a damn good father whenever he’s actually able to be a father.
His love for his daughter is extremely special, but this issue goes further when those same fatherly instincts kick in with kids that aren’t his. Buccellato handles the character with expertise, and if wishes could some true, then we’d see an ongoing Deadshot serious coming out of this run!
Waller. There’s something about the relationship between Waller and Deadshot that stands out from Waller and the rest of the Squad. As much as they hate each other, I’d almost venture to say they could be really good friends if the circumstances of how and why they knew each other were different. There’s no doubt Waller respects Deadshot on many levels, otherwise she wouldn’t have given into his wishes.
And let’s face it, she wouldn’t say something like that if she didn’t believe at least some part of it deep down inside.
The Bad: The only thing that could be considered bad here, is that people might find a number of elements of the issue predictable. It was clear that Deadshot was going to beat Will, and it was clear that his stipulation for staying with Waller would be privileges to see Suchin… But knowing that, I still enjoyed this issue, so I didn’t count that against him! If you can take plots that are this obvious and still breathe enjoyment and energy into them, you deserve credit for it!
- If you even remotely enjoy Deadshot, then you need to read this run!
Deadshot Overall: Buccellato’s Deadshot is fantastic! Not just this issue, but the entire run! There are times when the writer and artists mesh well, and execute a character so perfectly, that you don’t want to see it end… this is one of those instances! I’m sad to see this come to an end, but I’m secretly crossing my fingers that there will be more of this team covering this character in the future. A guy can dream, right?
DEADSHOT SCORE: 9/10
And now it’s time for the buzz kill… You can call me “Negative Nancy” or “Debbie Downer” but I could care less. This book sucks. I’m sorry Mike Barr. I hate to be that blatant, and I’m a fan of your previous work, but sheesh. There are certain authors that I expect more from, and he is one of them. To have his name tied to a book, and then have the quality of the book be so far below mediocre, it’s a real shame. I mean, honestly, Katana gives the earlier issues of Sean Ryan’s New Suicide Squad and (almost) Ann Nocenti’s Catwoman a run for their money in its level of badness.
If you haven’t been reading Katana, she travels to Markovia – don’t ask why, that would be asking too much – and gets involved with a war between the Markovians and King Kobra… because King Kobra is evil. I know it’s a crappy reason, just run with it and it’ll save you a lot of frustrations. Along the way, we’ve been introduced to a doctor, a kid, a stray cat, a junkie, and the Suicide Squad, and during that time, put up with bad fights and even worse dialogue. I’m not joking, the plot/ character motivations have been head and shoulders above the dialogue, and they’ve been nonsensical to the point that even a five-year-old would say, “WTF?”
There was an issue where it appeared as though Barr was getting his act together, and developed some interesting subplots, that were logical, created believable motivations, and actually provide a foundation for part of his story, but then they were basically abandoned to reveal Kobra’s master plan. And if you’re wondering what that master plan is, it’s basically the creation of Halo (the character I affectionately referred to as Skittle Girl in my previous review).
So what do we get in this issue? More of the same. More illogical plots that are nearly impossible to follow, because they don’t make sense. More bad action. More atrocious dialogue. And more characterization that is terrible. But wait! This time, Kobra and his army is teaming up with Katana and the Squad to stop Halo! That’s cool, right? No! If anything, it just makes everything worse because on top of the usual badness, we now have to suffer through Kobra whispering about turning on Katana, only for Katana to instinctively call him out and threaten him that attacking her would be a mistake… And it happens multiple times.
I could go on and on, and sound like even more of a whiner than I already do, so I’ll spare you. Just know that I spent most of the issue thinking about how glad I was that this was the last time I’d have to read this title. The story does wrap up, but I’m doing everything in my ability to forget this ever happened… But in case you’re not convinced, I’ve added a few images in the spoiler tag so you can make a judgement for yourself.
- I love Katana, but don’t waste your time with this book.
Katana Overall: Let me put it this way… I thought I’d never recommend Ann Nocenti’s Katana to anyone, but I’d easily tell you to read it over this…
Katana SCORE: 3.0/ 10
COMBINED SCORE: 6.0 /10