Comic Book Review: Outsiders #36: One Year Later

Out of all of the “One Year Later” titles, we here at the Revolution have found the Outsiders to be one of the weakest titles so far. Can Winick finally get this title going and up to the same level as some of the other “One Year Later” titles? We shall see.

Creative Team
Writer: Judd Winick
Penciler: Matthew Clark
Inker: Art Thibert

Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10.
Story Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Total Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: This issue starts with a quick re-cap of the past two issues. We then see the super speedster villain standing over the Outsiders. The speedster figures out that Nightwing is the leader so he races him out to somewhere away from the base and leaves him there. The villain then races back to the base. Nightwing is surrounded by a bunch of soldiers and tells the Outsiders via his communicator that he may be delayed for a while.

The remaining Outsiders are confident that since the Speed Force is gone that this villain will be easy to beat. Wrong. First, the speedster beats the crap out of Grace Choi. He punches her 25,000 times in the face. She looks like hamburger meat. The speedster then takes out Katana. Then he takes out Metamorpho. Boomerang then focuses and nails the speedster with several boomerangs. While the speedster is down, Thunder pounces on him. The speedster start to vibrate. Right as he breaks free from Thunder, Metamorpho comes back for round two and turns into an acid that eats off the speedster’s costume and then knocks him out.

Nightwing then shows up looking a little worse for the wear. But, Dick tells us that we should have seen the other forty guys that the he had to beat up. Nightwing then asks the Outsiders if the speedster looks familiar to them. Katana says that the Speedster is in his late twenties/early thirties. Nightwing says that the Speedster is a young Jay Garrick. The Flash. End of issue.


The Good: This issue was basically one big fight, but at least it was a good fight. I like how even though there is no more Speed Force, this speedster proved to the Outsiders that he was still more than enough to handle. I guess this is DC’s way of showing readers that a speedster without the Speed Force, even though slower, is still a force to be reckoned with.

I think that Winick created a nicely paced issue with a solid fight scene. The only character that I think Winick has written well during this “One Year Later” storyline has been Captain Boomerang. I am starting to warm up to this character.
Obviously, the big bomb was that the speedster is a young Jay Garrick. If it was not for that surprise ending then this story probably would have only gotten 5 or 6 Night Girls out of 10. I think that this Jay Garrick is a clone. I say this because over in Teen Titans this month we learned that the Brotherhood of Evil is collecting all the cloning technology across the globe in an effort to clone a body for the Brain. And in the next issue of the Outsiders we see that Mallah and the Brain are making an appearance. So, I’m sticking with the belief that this Jay Garrick is a clone.

Overall, Matthew Clark and Art Thibert’s artwork is pretty good. There are several panels that just look fantastic. Clark definitely draws a great speedster. Plenty of fluidity and motion in his movements.

The Bad: Winick’s dialogue is really weak in this issue. The characters seem to read to generically. Nobody seems to have much of a personality. The only exception is Boomerang. He has a bit of personality and had a cool moment where he said he was a “@#%$ing gunfighter” right before he nailed Jay Garrick with his boomerangs. Unfortunately, other than that one instance with Boomerang, the other characters are pretty devoid of any developed character or personality. And, obviously, the dialogue really suffers because of that.

I really liked the young Jay Garrick twist, but other than that this story was pretty weak. Nothing else happened and Winick really banked on that one surprise to make this issue good. The Outsiders is still one of the weaker “One Year Later” titles out there.

Like I said before, for the most part the artwork is nice. But, it can be a little inconsistent. Some panels looks just incredible. Other panels look a little weak. It does seem that Clark struggles with facial expressions and that causes everyone to look rather unemotional or generic in their expressions.