I’m just going to lay this out before I review this issue of Secret Six. I hate crossovers. No, let me rephrase that, I hate crossovers between two books, and no matter how the creative teams try, the books do not sync up.
Somehow when two creators join to do a crossover, instead of co-plotting and dialoguing an issue, we get each creator “trying to take a stab” at the other persons interest, and does it work? Sometimes, the law of averages works in their favor, but I just don’t care for them, especially when they involve a book I not only do not read, but involves a team of characters that I just don’t care about. This issue is part one of a two part crossover called: Secret Six VS The Doom Patrol.
We start with a relatively bland cover of Deadshot shooting one way, and Catman trying to swipe someone in the reader’s direction. Usually the best thing about Secret Six is the Daniel Luvisi, not to badmouth the rest of the issue, but the covers are the main thing that stands out to me when glancing over a book, and when I see the regular covers, I usually have to stop and take notice, this cover, I would not look twice at.
We open on Green Lantern fighting Superman as some voice over cries “Ultimate Crossover!” To which I cried back “I don’t care!” We are then taken two weeks back in time, which brings up the question why we got the opening panel of Green Lantern and Superman fighting, as best I can tell neither has ever been in this book, but I’ll carry on. Two weeks ago, we are twenty-something layabout Eric’s living room where his mother and stepfather tell him it is time to get and job and move out. Eric is then handed an envelope by his mother which she says “Comes from your grandfather….and I was told to give you it on this day” Eric goes into his room asks what is going to happen now and he opens the envelope to reveal a DVD from his grandfather saying “Guess what….I’m rich! Now let’s talk…” I kind of thought this was weird and a bit random. But it’s a comic, and this is supposed to be absurd, so I just went with it.
Next we cut to twelve hours ago, and Bane getting ready to go to a strip club with Scandal Savage, where he is being set up with her girlfriend’s friend. Yes, Bane, the man who once broke the Bat’s back, and is going to be played by Tom Hardy in Batman 3 is going on a blind date.
Can I just say, I like this. I know most people would go off and say “ZOMG! He broke the bat….now he’s dating! That’s not Bane! Bane’s a killer! Bane’s in Batman 3!! They can’t do this!!” Well, let’s be realistic. First off, it’s a comic book, which will have little to no impact on where the film goes. At no point will Nolan/Goyer say “Bane….blind date! That’s gold!!” However here, it works. In the series Bane has become obsessed with being a father figure to Scandal, and she wants him to focus on something else, so she calls in a favor and gets him something else to focus on. Also, its character development for Bane, to be honest all I know about Bane is he was addicted to Venom and he beat up Batman. That’s about it, that’s all you really have to work with. Here, we get some development, and it is entertaining, we see Bane going up to this girl he just met and saying he brought flowers, he brought chocolates, how about we go about this baby making business. I laughed when I read that, of course Bane is going to respond like that, he’s never had to deal with this situation before.
Next we see that Bane’s date is being harassed by someone and she wants him to stop. So Bane calmly bashes the man’s face in with one punch, and asks “Do you want me to break his spine?” again, I laughed, as this is exactly how someone with all the strength in the world, and no real people skills would react in this situation. Bane and Scandal then decide that Bane should see the girl some other time. She tells him to call her, and had the issue ended there, I would have said it was an enjoyable read. Sadly, it goes on.
We are next taken back to twelve days ago, Eric’s house, where his stepfather is coming home to a nice glass of scotch, being able to put his feet up, and finding out his stepson is going to blast his entire upper body into smithereens. I know, who says smithereens anymore?
Next page we are taken back to the present and to the Doom Patrol, a team I know nothing about, and from reading the first issue of their new on-going, I still know nothing about them. So from here on in, I will refer to them as best I can:
We have Robotman fishing, Bumblebee flying around and just being annoying, Ambush Bug being even more annoying pretending he’s a pirate and Negative Man just standing about, and Elasti-Girl doing god knows what.
It’s later revealed that they have been hired to take down a fish that has become evil and started eating people, for some reason. And the Doom Patrol is here to save the day, or go fishing or something. What follow are about four pages of the Doom Patrol fighting the savage fish, until the fish takes off Elasti-Girl's leg. It took me three times reading over that page to actually notice Elasti-Girls leg is missing, and frankly, because the character means nothing to me, and she seemed not to bothered, I just didn’t care either.
We are then taken again back in time to one week ago, where Eric goes to his friends basement to say “Hey guys….screw D&D lets play Warcraft! Oh….the expansion still buggy…let’s just go take over some island then.”
Next page we are shown that King Shark has taken Elasti-Girl’s leg, and has shrunk it to normal size. How or why I don’t know, seeing as she was about 14 foot when it was cut off, but alright. Next the Six show up and everyone starts fighting. It’s at this point I started to count the number of pages left. It’s 5.
This fight goes on for a few pages and then we are back with Eric, who in a suave new suit, takes his friends to the same island the two teams are fighting on and Eric shouts something about wanting a volcano as his secret hideout. I don’t know why, but I like this kid’s style.
The issue ends with the volcano Eric wanted to inhabit erupting and the six and the DP left on the island, basically….well doomed.
Now on to my thoughts:
This issue was really a game of two halves. You have the first half of the issue, which is enjoyable, and entertaining with some nice character development for Bane, and then you have the second half, which is basically one big crossover in which I was given neither the time, nor the space to care about either team, or this crossover which feels forced to push sales of both books up.
The art is also here and there. Again in the first half it was enjoyable and entertaining, while at the same time helped the story. In the second half, I was bored by it, and when I don’t notice a character missing a leg, you have a problem with your art style.
I can’t say if I’m going to bother reading the Doom Patrol issue this ties into, as I just don’t care enough about this story going on. I do want to read more about Bane and how he is developing, not because of Batman 3, but because I want to see what layers Simone can add to this character. With that, I can just read Secret Six and ignore this entire time and money wasting crossover.
With a good first half, and a weak second half, I feel I’m giving this book a fair score.
Secret Six #30:
Reviewed by Suavestar