Review: Deathstroke #1

Written by Kyle Higgins, Art by Joe Bennett and Art Thibert, Cover by Simon Bisley

Solicitation Info (from Previews): “Friends die, family disappoints, but a legacy… That lives forever.” Slade Wilson is the best mercenary in the DCU, and he’s been doing this a long time. Some might say too long. But they’ll learn: Never turn your back on Deathstroke the Terminator. He won’t quit, no matter how high the stakes. Kyle Higgins (BATMAN: GATES OF GOTHAM) and Joe Bennett (TEEN TITANS) team up to bring you the finest in mayhem and gore.

Bias: Deathstroke should be a villain, and too often, a character that gets their own book slowly but surely becomes a hero/anti-hero. If the creative team can keep him as the badass we know and love, I’ll get this. If he becomes a sympathetic anti-hero, I’m done.

What I liked: If I was worried that they’d tone him down, I was worried for nothing (at least, not at this early a stage, anyway – but this issue went a long way toward reassuring me that they have no intention of doing so). He was treated as a professional mercenary without a conscience – you know, Deathstroke. This was both a fun story in and of itself, and set the stage for what we can expect in the future from this title. By that, I mean that they established Deathstroke as a badass (in just about every scene he was in!), and

What I disliked: The only thing I would’ve preferred would be one more revelation. There was a mystery set up toward the end of the book, and I would’ve preferred to see what they kept referencing instead of keeping it hidden. Still, that’s a very minor complaint – I simply loved this book!

Verdict: So long as they keep writing him as the badass he was this issue, I’m definitely collecting this title.

As always, SPOILERS in comments, including my favorite scene, thoughts on what happened, and questions about what’s to come.

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1 Comment

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One response to “Review: Deathstroke #1

  1. My favorite scene was the final scene of the comic. Previous to this, I thought the Alpha Dawgs/Harm Armory did a good job of contrasting just how badass and professional Deathstroke was. But at the end, when he outright kills them so as to clean up the competition, it just secured this book as one of my favorites (right up there with Animal Man!) The teen sidekicks served their purpose, and they would’ve quickly become annoying (not to mention, in another book, they would’ve been the conscience that softened the main character) – so I’m very glad to see them gone.

    So Deathstroke’s “mission,” at the start of the title, is to re-establish his reputation – to show that he can still cut it. His agent brings that up at the end: “They don’t think you can cut it in the field anymore… They don’t…think you can cut it, Slade. Not anymore.” So this is what Deathstroke will be about, setting out to prove “them” wrong. I can definitely get behind that – especially since we’ve seen throughout the issue that it’s a perception issue, not a performance issue. Deathstroke is still very much a badass.

    The one mystery in the book was what was in the briefcase? I generally dislike when they keep such things hidden. I much prefer it when the mystery is heightened by the revelation, not by the absence of the revelation. Still, I’m sure we’ll see what was in the briefcase before too long, and it really was a damn good first issue.

    As for the mysterious, hooded figure, she was on the very first page! Third panel down, she’s on the far left of the panel, just watching the scene.

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