Birds of Prey #125
by Tony Bedard and Scott McDaniel
Scott McDaniel, your art is atrocious, and I find it appalling that Green Arrow let you draw it for forty+ issues. Appalled.
That said, this issue of Birds is supposed to be something of an anniversary issue, because it's two more issues to the end, and this is the last issue that ends in "5," and DC finally thought to use a stock cover from Frank freakin' Quitely.
Look at the cover. I'm showing the cover, so I have to show you as little Scott McDaniel art as is necessary. He does not know how to draw a human face. I don't think he understands that the human body has regular, normal proportions. It's sad.
You're tellin' me, Huntress.
I'm also showing you this cover, however, because it makes no sense, and Bedard tries his level best to shoehorn it into the comic. The header says "Black Canary and Oracle do Europe on 10 assassins a day" in insane font. The assassins, yes. Europe, no. They don't do Europe. They go to Las Vegas. They hijack an antique car, to thwart the "Collector," who's obsessed with collecting mint-condition everythings, and then finding like-minded people, and collecting them.
The villain may be the only original thing in this comic. The rest of it is a simple thwarting the villain. That's it. We don't get anything meaningful about the Birds as a team, and maybe one panel about the relationship between Black Canary and Oracle. It's as if the past issues -and past eras of Simone and Dixon- have done nothing to further their reliance on each other. I am severely disappointed in what should have been a good issue.
This was supposed to be more than the Birds stopping a psycho. This was supposed to be more than just two partners saying nothing important. There should've been more. This issue failed in every way. Sigh.
It may be the year-old candy, but your art still sucks, Scott McDaniel.
Secret Six #4
by Gail Simone and Nicola Scott
This storyarc is moving really slowly, but I can enjoy the ride, because hey - it's Gail Simone and Nicola Scott. I think I'll stop reading it by singles after this arc, though.
Basically, the beats here are 1) the team of mercenaries start distrusting each other, 2) we see how the main villain is a sociopath (no remorse for others, kills without reason), and then 3) the Six get apprehended. Cue cliffhanger, in which the Six are put in danger, but-not-really-because-we-all-know-that-they're-going-to-live-somehow-after-eating-that-poisoned-food.
It's a pretty standard Gail Simone issue, by which I mean there's some good action, with some gags here and there. The new villain's pretty dark (rips people's heads off), but pretty bland so far. Blander than this year-old candy at least.
I just wish I could get more bang for my buck here. I feel like this is all being written for the trade.