July 4, 2022

Gabbing Geek

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Noteworthy Issues: Suicide Squad #3 (May, 2021)

Waller sets her sights on her next recruit, a young speedster at the Teen Titans Academy.

Huh.  This issue apparently sets up a crossover with something called Teen Titans Academy.  What little I learned suggested it’s a school for superheroes, kinda like what the X-Men started off as.

Well, I can read that one on DC Infinity too, so I’ll check it out later.

Issue:  Suicide Squad #3, May 2021

Writer:  Robbie Thompson

Artists:  Eduardo Pansica and Julio Ferreira

The Plot:  Waller sends the Squad out to forcibly recruit a young speedster.

Commentary:  As I stated above, I know exactly nothing about Teen Titans Academy.  OK, I know the series exists.  That’s it.  I can make a rough guess what it is about based on the title, but I couldn’t tell you about any of the characters in it or anything along those lines.

However, the main idea here is Waller, putting together her own Justice League, wants a speedster.  She has a Superman in the form of Superboy, and arguably Talon is her Batman–if she can keep him from killing everyone around him–so I am guessing now she wants a Flash, setting her sights on a character named Bolt.  Bolt, Waller tells the reader, is faster than the Flash, but only for very short bursts of speed.  That said, that is about all I know about Bolt.  If anything, Bolt is different from Waller’s other recruits.  Even assuming Peacekeeper isn’t lying about how he got into the Squad on some made-up charges Waller concocted, all the members of the Squad are convicted criminals.  Bolt, as near as I can make out, is just some teenage girl with superspeed who hasn’t done anything wrong.

OK, Superboy is also innocent, but something tells me there might be more to Superboy than we’ve been told so far.

Granted, it also wouldn’t be much of a crossover if the Squad caught the girl and disappeared without a trace according to their plan.  That plus the series is starting to put together something like gallows humor as every teleporter they bring in ends up dying, leading to Peacemaker’s best line where he asks the most recent one if he’s seen This Is Spinal Tap.

Still, the Squad are, as a group, not reliable or trustworthy.  The first half of this issue shows the closest the Squad has to permanent members thus far–the vampiric Nocturna, the talkative Culebra, and Peacemaker–all doing something along the lines of talking amongst themselves about what Waller is up to.  It mostly comes down to Nocturna and Peacemaker since Culebra is being set up as a comic relief character that isn’t funny in-universe.  Granted, she’s not funny to me either, but that’s the point:  Culebra is more obnoxious than anything else, but given she’s also nearly indestructible, she might be the only one who can keep Talon in line.

Talon keeps reverting back and forth between owl-like and coherent, so that may be a little too necessary.

Still, this series continues to go along with the idea that Waller has finally overstepped her bounds.  She was more a tough woman who used the resources she had to do what she felt she had to.  Now she’s reaching for things she doesn’t have.  Bolt does not appear to be a criminal, or even an anti-hero like Peacemaker.  I would think there must be some forgotten supervillain speedster in DC’s universe full of characters.  Then again, it was probably just an attempt to drum up attention for both the books in this crossover.  As for this issue, I do like where Suicide Squad is going.

Grade:  B+

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