Review: Suicide Squad: Blaze #1

Review: Suicide Squad: Blaze #1

Review: Suicide Squad: Blaze #1

Writer: Simon Spurrier

Artist/Cover Artist: Aaron Campbell

Colouring: Jordie Bellaire

Lettering: Aditya Bidikar

Publisher: DC Comics Black Label

Release Date: February 9, 2022

Variant Cover: Matias Bergara

Review: Suicide Squad: Blaze #1

Issue #1

The attacks begin without warning. Brutal, sudden…cannibalistic. A metahuman with all the power of Superman but none of his humanity. An unstoppable being ruled only by hunger and instinct, striking at random across the world. To stop this threat, Harley Quinn, Peacemaker, Captain Boomerang, and King Shark have been assigned to corral, nursemaid, and if necessary execute five deadly new recruits: the expendable products of a secret government procedure called BLAZE. They’re ordinary prisoners, endowed with incredible power…in the certain knowledge that it’ll burn through them like wildfire. They have six months to live, maximum. If you’re staring down life in prison, maybe that’s a good deal—especially if you’re Michael Van Zandt, desperate to reunite with the mad lover who forsook you after your Bonnie-and-Clyde crime spree.

But that power? It’s surprisingly transferrable. As each member of the Squad dies…the others get stronger. What would a hardened criminal do with that knowledge? Worse yet: What would a desperate, lovesick idiot do with it? One thing’s certain: this time the Suicide Squad’s bitten off more than it can chew. Win or lose—they all burn.

Simon Spurrier and Aaron Campbell, the creative team behind the critically acclaimed John Constantine: Hellblazer, have been turned loose on the one DC title even more horrific and blackhearted than that one! We suggest you brace yourselves…

Writer: Simon Spurrier

In this 50-page DC Black Label, the ever-expanding Suicide Squad is joined by five ordinary convicts who are offered superpowers via a procedure called Blaze. What powers each will get is unpredictable but as each dies they will absorb and increase powers while counting down to their bodies burning out. They are on the trail of a Metahuman who kills three times a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner) harvesting parts of the brains of its victims. The traditional heroes don’t want to get involved for some reason so Weller brings in Task Force X.

Spurrier’s script is chaotic, violent but sits well within the wider mature titles that Black Label has been churning out since the infamous batdick a few years ago. The unlikely protagonist, in this pool of antagonists, is Michael Van Zandt, who is initially given the spoof powers of…..invisible arms. This feels like a nod to the infamous Arms Off Man from Gunn’s 2021 cinematic universe.

Artist: Aaron Campbell

I think I want to take a moment to acknowledge the work of Jordie Bellaire whose stunning colours shine through the issue adds a spectacular dimension to the Black Label. She uses muted, almost dirty tones and colours particularly when murders occur with the unknown villain while brighter tones around the squad and the BLAZE victims. Campbell’s artwork pairs perfectly with this colour scheme providing a chaotic medium for Task Force X to shine in their anarchic glory

Overall Thoughts

Black Label titles can be a hit or miss, but this uses the existing DC Universe to catapult fresh meat into the Task Force X grinder allowing for a fresh perspective for both existing readers and those that have joined after movies and TV shows. The 50-page length also helps give enough plot and development without boring or confusing the reader.

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Michael Lennox

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T'was a cold dark night in East Kilbride... and below the roundabouts, something old and ancient began to shudder awake. The world would rue the day that it gave the Green Jaguar comics to read!

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