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The OMAC Project #2

The OMAC Project #2

Scheduled to arrive in stores: April 20, 2005

Cover date: June 2005

Writer: Greg Rucka
Penciller: Jesus Saiz
Inker: Jesus Saiz

"The Eye In The Sky" - Part 2

Neal Bailey Reviewed by: Neal Bailey

Click to enlarge

In the JLA Watchtower on the moon, Batman attempts to explain why he created Brother 1 to Booster, Wonder Woman, and Superman.

He reveals how Zatanna made him forget the lobotomizing of Dr. Light, and he explains that he never wanted something like that to happen again.

He explains that Blue Beetle is dead. Furious, Booster blames him, and fires at Batman. Superman stops the blast.

Wonder Woman explains that blame will be laid later. Booster says that to accept blame, Batman would have to admit fault, so no blame will be laid.

Maxwell Lord watches this from his fortress. He realizes that someone has stolen the goggles, and summons his knight, Sasha. Sasha wonders how long it will be before Max figures it out, and dresses to go see him.

Max decides to distract the heroes, and sends and OMAC unit to Moscow, where Overthrow is relaxing in a strip club. The OMAC Unit fights Overthrow and then cuts him in half, killing him.

Sasha shows up at Max's headquarters. He tells her he has an assignment for her, but first he has to show her something.

Max reveals, in front of the White Queen and the Black Queen, that they've been trying to take him down. The Black Queen orders Jessica, her knight, to kill Max.

Max mentally pushes her, and they realize that he's a meta. He orders her to kill the traitors, which she does. Max orders Sasha to take Jessica into custody, then to go and remove evidence of Beetle's work, so that others can't find Checkmate.

Sasha arrives, and Batman intercepts her. They share a kiss.

Max, meanwhile, realizes that Sasha is the traitor. He dispatches three OMAC units to take them out, and the issue ends with the three units blasting down into the warehouse...

5Story - 5: The OMAC Project continues to impress me. It's not a suit book, meaning, if you're in it for the Batman and Superman action, it's not about that. It's a book about intrigue, a thriller, if you will, and it's also a spy game story.

In short, if you've read his novels or Queen and Country, it's what Greg Rucka's best at, aside from character.

This issue continues the already interesting premise... what if there were a big brother that were created to watch over the superheroes, and what if that fell into the wrong hands. Add the twist that these hands are Max Lord's, and you have drama.

The scene at the beginning with a repeat of the Identity Crisis was necessary. Some have complained about the many repeats, but it's important to keep everyone in on what happened, and this was a way to do it without wasting too much time, and it also allowed (and allows, in other books) multiple takes from varying points of narrative, and I have respect for that.

Overthrow's death was shocking, to say the least. We know, very well now, just how serious Max is about his control. The regicide attempt, the callous manipulation of minds, he's one twisted SOB, and he needs some taking down.

The ending is a great cliff, because one thing I've really wanted to see from the start is Batman taking on his own Frankenstein.

The moment where Booster points out that Batman would have to admit wrongdoing is priceless, also. Rucka, from conversations I've had with him, has a real sense of the peril with Batman's arrogance, and here's a key way he's bringing it into play, and well. It's tearing the JLA apart bit-by-bit, and I look forward to seeing these screws tightened.

Of the four lead-in books, this remains the strongest. Villains is a bit scattered so far, Day of Vengeance is a bit too comedy heavy, and Rann/Thanagar is just plain trying a bit too hard, but all are geared toward a solid, cross company, everyone working together event, and the end result is great work, a really solid, community, universe feel I haven't seen in the DCU since OWAW, and even then, only in pieces.

3Art - 3: Jesus has a very distinctive style that works for him. He's got characters down, and he's got detail. He's grim and gritty, which is not my favorite style, but some people can pull it off, and he's one of them, and it fits the subject matter.

That he does his own inks helps as well.

What makes this art a little harder to work for me is the fact that in this issue, he hardly has a background, anywhere. At times, it's good to mood, it adds a color flavor to the issue, but then, at other times, it just looks like he was either too pressed for time or didn't care to put in a background, and it hurts the art.

I think this art, with backgrounds aplenty, would be a five. I think, as it is, it's average, because the good of the character and the bad of the lack of detail even out.

4Cover Art - 4: It draws you in, it's relevant to the issue at hand, it's neat, it's dramatic. The only thing not working for it is that there's a bit of a stiff quality to the images. For instance, Wonder Woman's boots look like she's locked in static place...and stole her shoes from Mega Man.

And Max looks like a presidential old man, not the young, vibrant leader type we see inside. Still, all in all, a good cover.

Mild Mannered Reviews


Note: Month dates are from the issue covers, not the actual date when the comic went on sale.

January 2005

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