Team Defiance

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Deathstroke (Volume 4) #21
Written by Priest

Art by Diogenes Neves

This is issue marks the new era of this title where Deathstroke will be leading a new superhero team called Defiance consisting of Deathstroke, the Ravager, Jericho, Power Girl and Kid Flash sponsored by the US government. I like how they all have new uniforms too and I think Deathstroke’s black and white get up is a welcome change. As for the surprise appearance of Terra at the end of this I have no idea how she is even alive? Isn’t she suppose to be very dead? How pissed is Barry Allen going to be that Kid Flash is now on a team with Deathstroke? Anyways, I am excited about this bold new era for this series.

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Gotham Victims

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Batman (Volume 3) #26
Written by Tom King
Art by Mikel Janin

Ok what the hell Deathstroke is NOT a Batman villain. Why is he pictured with the Batman Rogues Gallery all of a sudden and showing up possibly in the next Batman movie – he is a Teen Titans villain who sometimes fights other heroes! But anyways the second part of the War of Jokes and Riddle was decent but I was surprised at how quick a read it was. It was good to see characters like Carmine Falcone and it looks like Batman has now joined the Justice League in his first year as a crime fighter which I don’t even think that was the case before Flashpoint so that is an interesting continuity change. The theme that I took away from this issue is that Tom King seems to be focusing on the innocent victims of the Batman villains and how Batman remembers their names to keep his crusade on crime going. I like that.

Birds Continuity

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Batgirl and the Birds of Prey #11
Written by Julia Benson and Shawna Benson
Art by Rogue Antonio

So the Rebirth Continuity has slowly been restored to the Pre-Flashpoint timeline but in this issue Barbara Gordon describes her time as Oracle leading the Birds of Prey and fighting the Calculator in the past – which seems to mean the Gail Simone run is back in continuity or at least the characters remember it but the Huntress is still suppose to be new to the Birds in this series therefore she wasn’t around for that arc – so who was their third member back then? I guessed in my head the bad guy behind Gus would be the Calculator but I am happy that we are seeing the Birds’ Pre-Flashpoint history returning. The cliffhanger ending has Catwoman being the person who paid Calcultor for intel! Now that makes me happy. To be honest, Catwoman works best as a thief instead of the borderline hero she has been since Ed Brubaker wrote her solo series. I kike that the Bensons are bringing the cat burglar element of Selena’s character into play.

 

Deathstroke Rebirth 1 – 20

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Deathstroke (Volume 4) #1
Written by Priest
Art by Carlo Pagulayan

I only know Deathstroke from his appearance in other comic books (and I have to say he is way overused) and not his solos series, and for a #1 issue this really is not written for new readers. I was so lost, and I know the character.

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Deathstroke (Volume 4) #2
Written by Priest
Art by Larry Hama and Carlo Pagulayan

Okay I have always wondered why Rose Wilson had silver hair, I always assumed it had something to do with whatever the thing is that Deathstroke injects into himself but when he has injected others – like sadly Cassandra Cain for example – their hair does not turn white. (Maybe that is just because Cassandra is so badass she can take it without her hair turning white.) Anyways, I still found this issue hard to follow, but better than the last – at least I know Rose Wilson/the Ravager from her Titans days.

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The War of Jokes and Riddles Begins

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Batman (Volume 3) #25
Written by Tom King
Art by Mikel Janin

This issue begins a flashback story called the War of Jokes and Riddles. It begins with many violent hard to watch/read murders by both the Joker and the Riddler and ends with a great panel of a naked Batman looking pretty great next to Catwoman in bed as he tells this story. We still don’t know if Catwoman said yes to his marriage proposal last issue but who cares – we got to see Mikel Janin draw a great naked Batman! Yay! Jokes aside (no pun intended), this was a great start to what looks like a very cool past-Batman story which if done right looks like it could be on the level of something like the Long Halloween. Tom King is really good at dissecting these characters and his explanation of why the Joker and the Riddler do what-they-do (as told by the Riddler) is fascinating.

Titans 10 and 11

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Titans (Volume 3) #10
Written by Dan Abnett
Art by Brett Booth

Ok Abnett why in the hell are you having the Titans call each other by real names right in front of the Fearsome Five! I can’t stand when writers do this. That being said this was a fun issue as the Titans face off against the Fearsome Five. Bumblebee, of all people, end up saving the day. I am very unclear what her powers are. In the end, she ends up having her memory of Mal Duncan erased which should make some drama in the future. Speaking of Mal, I like his new costume….I think.

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Titans (Volume 3) #11
Written by Dan Abnett, Benjamin Percy, and Priest
Art by Brett Booth

Wow as I suspected the events of the New Teen Titans series are now back in continuity! But they didn’t happen exactly as they did in the original series…I don’t remember Lilith being much in the comic at all and the costumes are different. This is an interesting take on things. In this continuity was Raven not in the New Teen Titans, but it was instead Lilith? I look forward to seeing where this goes.

Teen Titans 7 and 8

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Teen Titans (Volume 6) #7
Written by Benjamin Percy
Art by Khoi Pham and Phil Hester

Jackson Hyde makes it to Titans Tower and is immediately rejected by Robin until he saves Robin from King Shark. Damian then gives him a suit that he had been creating for himself for underwater missions. I wonder if this will be Jackson’s final Aqualad costume – it is unclear because he never puts it on in this comic. I am hoping Jackson is given the name Aqualad by Garth as a passing of the torch in the upcoming crossover.

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Teen Titans (Volume 6) #8
Written by Priest, Benjamin Percy, and Dan Abnett
Art by Khoi Pham and Phil Hester

This is Part 2 of the Lazarus Contract crossover that began here. I want to dislike this crossover because I know that Deathstroke trying to ressurect Grant Wilson has been done SO MANY TIMES in the past. In fact, I think it was done right before Flashpoint. But the writing and characterization is top notch I can’t really hate it. Tempest and the new Aqualad meet for the first time, Donna and Starfire saying how they should really be the ones in charge – the writers clearly know these characters. Kid Flash actually finds out that Wally has the same name as him in this issue which I figured the would have left for the Flash books to resolve.