Tony Black reviews Suicide Squad #2…
“THE BLACK VAULT” part 2! What was meant to be a routine mission to retrieve a “cosmic item” from an undersea fortress has become a nightmare beyond anything the Suicide Squad ever expected. And with half the team down, it’s up to Harley Quinn, Katana, and a demon-possessed graphic designer named June Moore to save the Squad from the most dangerous man in the DC Universe. That’s right…they’re screwed.
It’s been defiantly hard to fault Rob Williams’ run on Suicide Squad so far, and that streak continues here with ‘The Black Vault Pt 2: Blitzkreig Bop’, which once again balances the main story of the bad good guys undertaking their desperate mission to the titular vault, alongside the flashback to the backstory of Captain Boomerang in ‘Agent of Oz’. We’ll get to that in a minute, first the main storyline – which sees Task Force X where we left them previously, sinking to the bottom of the ocean as they struggle to break into the secret vault. It’s a blisteringly good set of panels once more from Williams and Jim Lee, on inking duties.
Why? Plenty of reasons. Firstly the introduction of a mysterious, sinister foil to the dispassionate Amanda Waller back at prison base called Harcourt, who manages to give Waller someone to play off as she continues trying to justify the team’s existence. Secondly, the writing – sharp and comical, with plenty of jokes made at Killer Croc’s expense particularly as they effect ingress into the vault, and thirdly because Williams (unlike the half-arsed recent movie) is unafraid to live up to the promise of the title: here, people die unexpectedly, and it packs a wallop! Oh and this is all without mentioning the HUGE surprise appearance at the end of the episode, re-introducing a DC bad guy who this lot are surely way out of their depth facing!
Beyond this, Williams and Ivan Reis in the Boomerang story do even better work than in Deadshot’s one-shot last time, depicting the comical Aussie Captain as a man of wish fulfillment and fantasy (which allows them to wonderfully pastiche James Bond along the way) while touching on real undercurrents of pathos. Much like the rest of the issue, it’s great, and Suicide Squad right now–simply–is the DC Rebirth comic to beat.