Whilst I’m still pissed off that Ales Kot was removed from the Suicide Squad gig, this issue did enough to reassure me that Matt Kindt will be an able replacement for him. I won’t be reading it, but he has a good handle on Deadshot and the murkier side of the DC Universe.
This issue doubles as an origin story for Deadshot, and also a set-up for the Suicide Squad issues Kindt will be writing that tie into Forever Evil, so whilst once again the title of this comic means nothing (although Kindt will also be writing JLoA during the crossover), at least this one does serve a purpose.
Deadshot’s origin is pretty interesting, his parents and sister are accidentally killed by gangsters when the bullets they are firing at some junkies go through the narrow walls of their apartment. Deadshot survives, and becomes a hitman, declaring that he doesn’t want anyone he kills to die for nothing like his family, so that’s why he never misses, and why he always gets paid. This is a good hook for a villain, and it sets him up as a real professional in a world of crazies.
The present sequences show that in the aftermath of the Secret Society and CSA taking over, the Squad has been disbanded, and Deadshot is back on his own jobs, in this case, the man who hired the men who accidentally killed his family back in the day. The way Deadshot killed this dude (who was in some kind of armour, apparently, with all the villains joining together, the mob have to do the dirty work themselves, no hired hands are available) was pretty damn awesome.
The issue ends with Amanda Waller calling up Deadshot, and telling him that they need to get the Suicide Squad back together, he accepts, but only after being paid $12m. I suppose now I can see why Kot left the book, the team is really being changed by the crossover, and he may not have wanted to go along with it. I wish Kindt the best of luck, but I’m still going to buy Kot’s Image book Zero instead. But he does write a mean Deadshot, his description of himself as a ‘bullet… waiting to be fired’, was bad-ass.
The art here comes from two different pencillers, Sami Basri does the present-day stuff, and Carmen Carnero the flashbacks, both do decent work, but I preferred Basri overall, even though his style here isn’t as polished as I remember from his Power Girl or Voodoo stuff.