You might think that after the last few issues of Justice League, this might be another cruel, depressing look at other members of the Crime Syndicate, but there is more to this story. This is a tragic, sad story, of a lonely robot who just wants be able have some of the feels. With Grid being the newest member, he's been going through the files of his partners, trying to understand them, and hopefully be able to feel some sort of emotion. So we get to see the pasts of the remaining members of the Syndicate.
We get Grid talking to the Outsider about the hooded prisoner, who is a mystery, even to Grid. He tells Outsider that he needs more anysthetic if they want to keep him under, but he doesn't understand what the big deal is because the man is human. The Outsider says that the man is far from normal, and that they will give him some Ketamine.
Harold Jordan works for the Air Force, but is too scared to fly, and instead is designated to clean the planes instead. Instead, he is working as an undercover spy, until Mr. Ferris catches him, and threatens to beat him. Suddenly, everything around him is destroyed, and Abin Sur appears, trying to trick Jordan into taking the ring. Jordan accepts, And Sur dies. The ring tells Jordan it needs to be recharged, and these tentacles come out and charge the ring, hurting Jordan. Which explains why he doesn't want to recharge his ring.
Next we see Jonnathan Allen being taken in by a few cops (on our earth, these are members of the Rouges), just as his girlfriend, Rhonda Pineda, crashes into the truck, breaking him free. They end up killing the cops in a pretty brutal way, when they realized that they were chipped, as more cops storm the building. Jonny and Rhonda race to the roof of the building, but they accept that they will not make it, and would rather die together. Jonny is then struck by lightning, which knocks Rhonda through a rooftop window into the room below. There is where Ray Palmer A.K.A. Atomico is in a containment chamber, which malfunctions because of the lightning, and Rhonda instantly shrinks.
We then get a page showing us Professor Martin Stein paying a hobo $200 to lure him into his lab, and using the Firestorm matrix on himself, and the hobo, which he has killed. This gives him a link between life and death.
Then we get to Superwoman. Who's files have been deleted, so Grid, nor the reader knows anything about her. Grid mentions that if he could feel… He would feel suspicious. We then see an unkown person enter the cell of the hooded prisoner and say, "Soon." as the hooded person smiles.
We the cut to Star Labs as they have stabilized Victor (Cyborg), however, his father is upset because heroes had to win everytime, whereas the villians only had to win once. Victor comes to, and says "No, Dad. They didn't win. Not yet."
This issue was very cool. Some were upset because it didn't give the other characters near as much time. And while that's true, I don't feel like they rushed though these other characters. We got the jist of it, let's not spend too much time going over everyone's backstory. Where this issue excels is in the present day. Here, it keeps teasing us the identity of the hooded prisoner, and the fact that I don't know is making me anxious. I really want to know who it is, because they keep shooting down my theories.
Also, the moment between Victor and his father, gave me chills when I read it. We get to see the guts that Victor has (figuratively, not physically. That happened a few issues ago), the courage, and heroism shines through him, even when his is laying on a bed on life support. These moments were the highlights of the issue, for me. And even though it was only for a few pages, and the majority of the issue was showing us backstory, the focus was clearly in the present day. It got me excited to be able to read a Cyborg focused book next month.
Justice League #26:
Reviewed by Corbin Pool