Written by Kyle Higgins (Batman: Gates of Gotham and Nightwing) with art by the team of Joe Bennett (Birds of Preyand Justice League: Generation Lost) and Art Thibert (Outsiders and Trinity), this has been one of the titles I’ve been looking to review the most since it was announced to be part of the 52 line up.
Some of you might be wondering (*cue the Shaft theme*) who is this one eyed merc in the blue and orange?
That’s killing machine for those with cash?
Deathstroke, ya, damn right.
Who is the man with the meat cleaver sword?
That’ll decapitate some Russian dudes?
Deathstroke, can you dig it?
Alright, I think I desecrated Isaac Haye’s ‘Shaft’ bad enough now. Just be glad I didn’t decide to record, sing the whole thing, and put it up on youtube. To those unfamiliar with the mercenary known as Deathstroke aka Slade Wilson here’s a short run down of the man. He possesses a healing factor which allows him to heal from physical injury faster than normal as well as enhanced strength, speed, agility, stamina, and reflexes. But what makes him such a dangerous man is his ability to use up to 90% of his brain at any given time which makes him a tactical genius on the battlefield who can almost anticipate his opponent’s next move.
In this premiere issue we see Higgins bringing Deathstroke back to his roots as in his own words ‘a major damn bad ass’ and the best at what he does. Updated with a new more armored look (reminds me a bit of the Azrael’s Batman armor) he also wields a meat cleaver like sword (on par with some of the Japanese video game characters out there). In the first few pages we see Mr. Wilson here dispatching a squad of heavily armed Russian bodyguards and their boss as if it was some walk in the park. His next mission was a bit more interesting as he has to work with a team of three other mercenaries new to the game to retrieve a ‘package’ off a cargo plane going three hundred miles per hour in midflight. It an’t nothing but a G thing to a merc with Deathstroke’s skills.
Higgins delivers a fantastic first issue here with the story which is perfectly paced. The duo of Bennett and Thibert also gives us some stunning art and action scenes which leaves this fanboy unable to put down the comic until he got to the end. Both the writer and the artists seem to be on the same page here with Deathstroke, he’s not a good guy, a hero, or even a merc with a heart. Slade Wilson is one stone mother f*#@%$ (pardon my french) who would take anyone out as long as his employers pay on time. I will be definitely be back for issue two of Deathstroke as soon as it hits the shelves and suggest you do to.