Written by Christopher Priest
Pencils by Diogenes Neves
Inks by Jason Paz
Colors by Jeromy Cox
Cover by Ryan Sook
After being put on trial by the Secret Society, Deathstroke was captured by Dr. Ikon and brought to Father Suel in Canada to receive some guidance as well as some punishment. The Defiance Team tries to find him with little success while Adeline and Wintergreen stay back at HQ, where a delegation from China has arrived to arrest Deathstroke!
This issue opens up with some answers about Terra. Since her appearance in the series, we haven’t known where she came from or what her history with Slade was, and now we get a quick recap of her life. We see a young Terra undergo a childhood tragedy while fleeing her homeland of Markovia before being approached by Slade. He had plans for her, but was unprepared for her to have plans of her own concerning the two of them. After the flashback, we see Slade in the present day debating the philosophy of redemption with Father Suel, but he finds it difficult to do so when the Wintergreen implant that Dr. Ikon left in Slade’s neural transmitter keeps on taunting him and denying his ability to reform. Matters get even more complicated when Jericho arrives at the church to confront his father, only for his Ikon Suit to self destruct!
Back at Defiance HQ, Adeline and Wintergreen are forced to stall the Chinese Delegation, complete with New Super-Man, since they have no idea where Slade is. Meanwhile, Terra is on a mission of her own. She approaches the White Lotus gang while disguised, trying to figure out why they might need a bodyguard as prestigious and expensive as The Forgotten. The White Lotus assume Terra is a spy and force her to show them just how powerful someone with control of the Earth can be. As they fight, the mysterious Hmong girl known as Willow arrives. There is a moment of confusion as Willow identifies Terra as someone named Claire, and Terra assumes that Willow is Rose Wilson in disguise. The battle continues and Willow is thrown out the window only to be caught by the giant arms of Dr. Ikon!
Thoughts on the issue:
I’m going to be perfectly honest, I don’t really know what happened in this issue. After the interesting recap of Terrra’s new continuity, there are a lot of people in a lot of places that don’t make any sense. Terra is on a train with Rose on one page, and then Rose isn’t seen again for the rest of the issue. Terra shows up at the White Lotus in a disguise that makes her look like Willow but is still referred to as the Princess of Markovia. Then the disguise is shown to make even less sense when we learn that Terra had no idea who or what Willow is. Add that to Jericho’s arrival at the church amounting to nothing and we’ve got an issue that’s clearly written to fit into a trade.
Hopefully, more context will come by the end of the arc. What always gets me about this series is that I don’t mind how scattered it is; all of those issues listed above should affect my appreciation of the book, but I still find myself compelled and curious due to the dialogue, pacing, and artwork.