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Mild Mannered Reviews - Specials

Villains United #5

Villains United #5

Scheduled to arrive in stores: September 8, 2005

Cover date: November 2005

Writer: Gail Simone
Penciller: Dale Eaglesham
Inker: Wade von Grawbadger

"Victims of Aggression"

Neal Bailey Reviewed by: Neal Bailey

Click to enlarge

The Secret Six attack the Friendly Tek Lexcorp building.

Catman attacks Monsieur Mallah, a giant ape, blowing their surprise attack. Ragman rushes to aid. Deadshot shoots off Mallah's ear while Catman sinks two daggers into Mallah's chest.

Parademon and Scandal embark on a mission deeper into the building. Tweedledee and Tweedledum get in the way. Parademon smacks one of them out of the way. He hands Mother boxes to Scandal that he's previously stolen, and they get to work.

They get data on Mockingbird, then leave.

Luthor is interrupted from his chat with Vandal Savage by Psimon and his lackeys. Luthor tells them to attack a target and gives them details offered by Calculator. When he returns, Vandal Savage storms off, angry at having been dismissed.

Luthor, appraised of the fact that if the JLA decide to stop mind-wipes, the Society might fall apart, points out the Secret Six, and indicates that they're part of the solution.

In space sector 1729, Lady Quark and Sinestro fight over membership in the Society. It's not clear if Sinestro is recruiting her, berating her for joining, or being invited by her. It seems, however, that since Quark says he's on an errand for Earthmen, he's recruiting her.

At Secret Six headquarters, Cheshire taunts Catman about being pregnant with his child. He tells her that her pregnancy will not reach its conclusion, and Deadshot cheers him on.

Luthor tells the Society not to act on the Secret Six, but they outvote him and begin gathering muscle.

Psimon returns with Pariah, who they drop at Luthor's feet. Pariah can sense a world's destruction. He tells the society Luthor wants a power ring and Wonder Woman's lasso, and that Luthor won't survive "his" coming.

Mockingbird expresses displeasure with the data theft, and promises to exact vengeance on whoever is responsible. Catman instead offers to go on a suicide run against the Society, and whoever survives walks away. Mockingbird agrees.

Catman attacks Deadshot, revealing that he knows that Deadshot is the one who killed his pride through information provided by Cheshire.

Cheshire tells them she's defected to the Society as alarms wail. Outside, a huge group of villains march on the compound.

4Story - 4: I'm still liking what I'm seeing, with a few exceptions. Some things get to me, like, why would the Society crumble if the heroes stopped wiping minds? It's my understanding that they're part of the Society because if they're not, Luthor will kill them. That's the threat anyway, right?

The Sinestro scene was, as I said, confusing as well.

But for the most part, everything is pretty much in line and leading into the final issue well, without the feeling of being extraneous. I think we should know more about Mockingbird by now (otherwise, what's the point of finding the data if they're just going to find out next issue, right?). But I do like a lot of the developments. Pariah is a neat twist, and Luthor dying before "he" arrives... could be some Anti-Monitor action, could be some other him, but it's neat to conceive of a peril to Luthor that 's real... though if he dies, I'll personally form my own Six.

Cheshire's revelation was neat, though I'm wondering why she didn't tell Catman right when she defected, to cover her escape.

I'm still thinking Luthor is Mockingbird. It's Luthor's style to pit villains against villains, and the foreshadow that the Six was part of his solution to keep the Society in line makes that even more sensible. But, as everyone says, what about Joker? But then, I don't see Joker as the blackmailing type. Not his modus.

I also thought, maybe Jason Todd. Why? The bird thing, the secrecy, and the fact that Mockingbird looks bald, which might just as soon be a Red Hood. But my story sense says Luthor.

Interesting, yet.

5Art - 5: There was a moment where action was pretty well done in the last one, and that recurred here. Catman's flip from Mallah is incredibly well done. That's on the small scale.

On the large scale, the splash with all of the villains, the distinctiveness of each character in a field of so many, and just generally a very good job on art continues to impress me.

4Cover Art - 4: Holy cow... it happened in the issue, it's representational, and the pose is compelling. It's as simple as that, isn't it? The cover rules.

The only reason I knock a point is because it would have made more sense to either have more files or a background... there's just a LITTLE too much empty space, and I'm patently against blank backgrounds in covers.

Mild Mannered Reviews


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

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