Comic Book Review: Outsiders #19

This week Rokk gave me the pleasure of reviewing Outsiders. Since Tomasi came aboard, this has been one of DC’s best books. Let’s take a look at Outsiders #19.

Creative Team
Writer: Peter Tomasi
Pencils: Fernando Pasarin/Jeremy Haun
Inks: Prentis Rollins/Wayne Faucher/Jeremy Haun

Story Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8.5 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: A thrasher (drone) has uncovered and retrieved two more pieces of the meteor rock. They are part of the same meteor that changed Vandal Savage and Metamorpho. By using the meteor pieces they have accumulated, the Insiders are able to prolong their lives.

The Insiders add the two new pieces to a device called the Attractor. When the Insiders turn it on, it sends out power blasts that will find the remaining pieces.

As we saw at the end of the previous issue, the Outsiders have surrounded Deathstroke. Unfortunately for them, their leader (Alfred) is being used a human shield by Deathstroke. Deathstroke opens fire on the Outsiders. The Outsiders take him down. Deathstroke signals his partner to open fire on his location. Deathstroke’s sidekick unleashes a bunch of bomb blasts.  The blasts knocks the Outsiders off of their feet. Deathstroke recovers and takes Alfred hostage again.

Elsewhere…a man is crossing various terrains. He is Vandal Savage. Finally, he ends up in a snowstorm. Savage is on a quest to find the meteor rock. The mark of Cain, that Savage received during a Final Crisis spin-off, still glows on his face.

Meanwhile…the Insiders have calculated the origin point of the Outsiders vessel. They send a squadron of soldiers to eliminate anyone in the Outsiders’ satellite headquarters. When they are done, they will destroy the satellite.

We cut back to the Outsiders versus Deathstroke.  Geo-Force wants to take out Deathstroke. Black Lightning wants Geo-Force to worry more about the innocent bystanders. As Geo-Force confronts Deathstroke, Deathstroke sees the reflection of Katana leaping at him from behind. Deathstroke spins around and a major sword fight ensues.

Deathstroke’s partner blasts the top of a building so the debris falls towards a crowd. Deathstroke makes a break for the body of the man he killed in the previous issue. Metamorpho beats Deathstroke to it. Deathstroke chops the body in half, takes the part that contains the meteor rock, and escapes.

Against Lightning’s wishes, Geo-Force ignores the bystanders and focuses his power on the rock in the body. Geo-Force is able to use his powers to pull the rock from the body. The other Outsiders rescue the bystanders. Beside the dead man, the Outsiders find numbers that he wrote by using his own blood.

On the Outsiders satellite headquarters…the Insiders’ soldiers are attacked from the shadows. They are tricked into shooting one of their own. He is holding a note that says welcome to hell. The Creeper (he was left behind when the Outsiders went after Deathstroke) descends from the ceiling, laughing at the soldiers.

Back in the snowstorm…Savage is surrounded by ninjas. He tells them that their blood will warm his body. A sword in thrown down in front of him. Ra’s al Ghul is standing in front of him.

The Good: Outsiders #19 was a great read.  Tomasi includes so many little touches that add depth to the story. The way Deathstroke was able to see Katana’s reflection in Owlman’s armor was an example of that.  It is understandable that not even the smallest and slightest detail would escape the attention of a character like Deathstroke. 

The fight between Katana and Deathstroke was well done.  This fight served the purpose of showing the reader just how deadly Katana can be. Katana held her own against one of the best.

Geo-Force’s obsession with stopping Deathstroke was very believable and built nicely off of the story from DC Universe: Last Will and Testament. These two characters have hated each other since the Final Crisis spin-off story where Geo-Force put a sword through Deathstroke. And Black Lightning was a part of that story as he tried to help Geo-Force deal with his hate and rage.  I will be interested to see where Tomasi takes this division between Black Lightning and Geo-Force.

I knew that Vandal Savage had to put in an appearance in this story with all the talk about the meteor that changed him. What I did not expect was the addition of al Ghul. Based on the revelation that the meteor can prolong a youthful life, I am sure Ra’s al Ghul is very interested in procuring it.

Normally, when another art team fills in for the regular art team I am usually disappointed.  That is not the case with this issue.  I have to say that this art team impressed me. I would not be upset if this team drew more issues. The art did seem familiar. It took me a while, but I finally realized where I had seen this style before. It reminded me of some of the best artwork from the old Valiant line of comic books. In my book, that is a high compliment.

The Bad: This is a bad place to start reading if you missed the first chapters of this story arc.

Overall: Outsiders #19 was another great chapter in Tomasi’s story. I cannot wait to read the next issue.


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