Beginning only moments after last week’s Suicide Squad #67 ended, Secret Six #17 is the second part of a three-part “Blackest Night” tie-in that follows a three-way conflict between Amanda Waller’s Suicide Squad, the Secret Six and the homicidal Black Lantern Suicide Squad. The fight began last issue, and it gets complicated in this one – as Waller and Multiplex burn down the house of Secrets, Belle Reve turns into a bloodbath. The Six and the Squad are too busy fighting each other to notice that the dead rise until it’s too late. Simone and Ostrander pack the issue with quick, clever character moments in between fast-paced action segments that vary in style from a brutal martial arts battle between Bronze Tiger and Catman and a futile confrontation between Bane and the superpowered team of Count Vertigo and Nightshade.
Kudos go to colorist Jason Wright, who, alongside artist J. Calafiore, have crafted the most memorable and realistic images seen yet in Blackest Night‘s emotion-o-vision. Seeing Deadshot on the ground, veins of powerful emotions surging up through cracks in his near-sociopathic emotional armor is a clever image that also fits with everything we know about the character. Secret Six #17 ups the tension dramatically from the previous issue, maintaining a breakneck pace as it dashes towards next month’s conclusion. Exciting, well-characterized and fun, it’s just another issue that suggests that Secret Six is one of the best books on the shelves today.
– Cal Cleary
Suicide Squad #67
Secret Six #16