52 #14 Review

The Revolution absolutely loves 52. This has been one of the best reads on the market. DC has pulled off a real coup with this weekly title. I thought 52 #14 was the best issue so far. I’m positive that 52 #15 is going to be an excellent read. Let’s do this review.

Creative Team
Writers: Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison, Greg Rucka and Mark Waid
Penciler: Dale Eaglesham
Inker: Art Thibert

Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Story Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: Week 14, Day 6: The issue starts with Renee Montoya and the Question on a plane headed for Kahndaq. They land and take a cab to their hotel. When they arrive at the hotel, they realize that the entire nation is having a weeklong party to celebrate the arrival of Isis.

We then shift to Steelworks where Dr. Kala Avasti is banging on the door demanding to see Steel. Steel has been hiding in his lab for the past month. Dr. Avasti tells John to open up. That he isn’t responsible for Natasha joining Luthor’s new super team.

John opens the door and says he is responsible. Dr. Avasti enters the lab and sees that John has completed a brand new suit of armor for Natasha. Dr. Avasti calls it a masterpiece. John says that it is too little too late. John is distraught that he doesn’t know how to get Natasha back. That Luthor owns her soul.

We then zip over to Dr. Magnus meeting with some agents of the U.S. government. Dr. Magnus attempts to bring Mercury back online, but it fails due to problems with the responsometer technology. The government agents tell Dr. Magnus that the Metal Men are prototypes for a new generation of smart weapons. That they will pay Dr. Magnus a great deal of money if he will let them dismantle the Metal Men and study them. They tell Dr. Magnus that this is the last time the government will ask politely. Dr. Magnus turns down their offer.

We then shift to Dr. Magnus visiting Professor Morrow. When Dr. Magnus gets to Morrow’s cell, he finds it completely empty. Security investigates the scene, but cannot figure out how Morrow managed to escape a locked room that was under surveillance. Morrow left a not behind addressed to Dr. Magnus. The note says “For all your kindness, Will.” It also included a string of numbers that are a machine code. Magnus remembers that Morrow told him that Magnus was the only one of Morrow’s students that understood the significance of Morrow’s creation of the world’s first artificial souls.

We then cut back to the Question and Montoya deciding to investigate an address that had connections to Intergang. On their way to trying to find the building, Montoya gets the feeling that they are being followed. When she mentions something to the Question, he nonchalantly says that they have been followed since they left the hotel. That the person following them is Abbott, the wolfman. The Question and Montoya then arrive at the address and kick down the door. There they find the bodies of five dead men. They search for clues, and other than numerous boxes of rat poison, they can’t find anything. When they exit the building, they find themselves surrounded by the Kahndaq military who arrest them on the spot.

Week 14, Day 7: We see Dr. Magnus successfully brining Mercury online. Mercury says he is glad to see Dr. Magnus once again. Magnus seems very pleased to have Mercury back again. End of story.

We are “treated” to a two page origin of Metamorpho. End of issue.

The Good: 52 #14 is another superlative issue! The boys on 52 continue to crank out an entertaining issue each and every week. I am incredibly impressed by the effort that DC has put forth on this title. As always, 52 #14 is well paced and plotted. It isn’t too fast. It isn’t too slow. The natural flow and growth of this story is incredible. Each issue gives us a few morsels of new information that answers some old questions, but then immediately sprouts several new questions. The complexity and layers that are weaved with these various plotlines is wonderful to read.

I liked the Question/Montoya scenes in Kahndaq. This plotline is getting more and more interesting now that they are in Black Adam’s backyard. The Question and Montoya have outstanding chemistry. The dialogue between these two characters is wonderfully done. Very humorous and fun to read. I have never been a big fan of Montoya, however, I think that she and the Question have such incredible chemistry and some of the best dialogue that I hope Montoya is a character in the Question’s new comic book.

Of course, the Question/Montoya plotline gets cranked up a notch with their capture by Black Adam’s military. I cannot wait to see how Black Adam reacts to the Question and Montoya sneaking around Kahndaq and thinking that Black Adam has some type of connection with Intergang. Should be interesting.

The scene with Steel was short, but well done. It was a rather touching scene and I really felt John’s pain. Steel is becoming such a terribly tragic character that I fear he may be the person who dies. To me, Steel is a true hero. He is old school. He is everything that the perfect hero should be. To see him lock himself away for a month and create a beautiful suit of armor for his niece was powerful and conveyed his feelings of guilt and hopelessness. This suit of armor is John’s tribute to a niece who he has completely lost to his hated nemesis, Luthor.

I am curious to see where the writers go with this storyline. I have a feeling that John is going to die a hero’s death and that his death will be the impetus for Natasha turning on Luthor and becoming the new Steel and a true hero.

I found all of the Dr. Magnus scenes to be rather interesting. I love the Metal Man and am very excited about their return to the DCU. I like Magnus’ character. He takes Prozac and has a tenuous grip on sanity, but is such a genius and is honestly trying to keep in touch with reality and do the right thing. It is clear that we are going to have a run in with the government at some point with regard to the Metal_Men.

And we get the new twist thrown at us concerning T._O._Morrow’s unexplained disappearance. It is undoubtedly related to all of the various kidnappings and disappearances of all the various evil scientists. It appears that Dr. Magnus is one of the few remaining scientists who have yet to disappear. I am enjoying this storyline and can’t wait to learn more about the mastermind behind the abductions of these various scientists.

The ending was nice. Dr. Magnus must have used Morrow’s machine code to help him revive Mercury. Soon we are going to see the awesome Metal Man back in action!

52 #14 gave the reader a chance to catch their breath after the past couple of issues. We got plenty of build up to lay a nice foundation for some rather exciting issues over the next several weeks. 52 really has a nice rhythm and flow to it.

The artwork was pretty good. It wasn’t anything incredible, but it was very solid and didn’t get in the way of a very entertaining story.

The Bad: I have no serious or major complaints with this issue. I have two very minor squabbles with the writing. At one point, The Question asks Montoya if she is going to come up with a snappy “reverse-sexist” retort. Check out the definition for sexism: “discrimination or prejudice based on sex.” There is no such thing as “reverse-sexism.” Either something is sexist or it is not. I was surprised to see such an uneducated use of that term.

Also, the guard that talks to Dr. Magnus uses the word “ain’t” and seems to be your ordinary prison guard, but then busts out word “supercilious” to describe Professor Morrow. That word was rather odd and stuck out like a sore thumb. I wouldn’t imagine that a prison guard who uses the word “ain’t” is going to work the word “supercilious” into their lexicon.

The origin of Metamorpho back up story was pretty much a waste of two pages. I’d rather get two more pages of the 52 storyline than these origin back-ups.

Overall: All in all, 52 #14 was another impressive issue. Johns, Morrison, Rucka and Waid are doing a phenomenal job on 52 and deserve a lot of praise. A weekly format is not easy, and these writers have pulled it off and made this a compelling read each and every week. The pacing is just right. Very controlled and steady. The plotlines are all rather engaging. 52 is definitely a comic book that is worth your money.