“Search and Rescue” (Batman and The Outsiders #2 Comic Review)

Batman and The Outsiders #2 Comic Review

Writer: Bryan Hill

Artist: Dexter Soy

Colors: Veronica Gandini

Letterer: Clayton Cowels

Cover: Tyler Kirkham & Arif Prianto

Variant Cover: Otto Schmidt

Lesser Gods Part 2

“Search and Rescue”

What You Need To Know

Batman has given the Outsiders a mission: find, rescue, and protect the metahuman named Sofia. Sofia meanwhile, may have found her own help in the form of Kaliber. Unfortunately for those looking to protect Sofia, Ishmael is hellbent on finding her and taking her to Ra’s Al Ghul. Will the Outsiders be able to stop whatever scheme the Demon’s Head has in motion?

What Just Happened

The issue begins with Jefferson Pierce meeting Bruce Wayne in the Batcave. Bruce informs Jefferson that he had a tracker placed in Sofia and he also knows that Kaliber has been assigned to protect her. Bruce tasks the Outsiders with traveling to Los Angeles to locate Sofia and bring her to safety.

At Joshua Tree, Kaliber informs Sofia that he was lying when he told her that he comes from the future. Kaliber informs her that he is really a former arms dealer from Markovia. Kaliber explains to Sofia that Ishmael is also from the Ark Program and his powers make him a parasite that leeches powers from other metahumans. Sofia demands a gun from Kaliber for protection and is willing to help him take watch. Kaliber nicknames Sofia “Fragile”

Elsewhere, Ishmael is tracking Sofia and is also in communication with Ra’s Al Ghul. Meanwhile, Sofia is actually planning to use the gun to commit suicide, when Ishmael crashes through her room. Kaliber is there to intervene and tells Sofia to run. Sofia begins to run away but decides to stay and fight. Sofia ambushes Ishmael, but Ishmael is able to fend off Kaliber and Sofia. Ishmael tries to land a critical shot on Sofia, but Katana appears to fight him off. The rest of the Outsiders team also arrives on the scene.

Ishmael mocks Katana and informs her that Ra’s Al Ghul also wants her. Ishmael also drains Black Lightning before Kaliber blows his arm off. Ishmael’s arm regenerates and he lands a huge attack that floors everyone. Ishmael escapes the scene with Sofia in tow. Hours later, Sofia wakes up in Khadym to the presence of Ra’s Al Ghul who claims he has much to teach her.

My Thoughts

Bryan Hill does a great job with playing with the readers’ expectations in this issue. A lot of readers and news outlets believed that Hill was creating his own versions of Cable and Bishop for the DC Universe, but Hill’s true intention were more grounded than what was assumed by the ending of last issue. I giggled a little when Kaliber admitted to Sofia that he is really not from the future and only said it to get her attention. I can picture Bryan Hill winking at readers as they read that exchange. While some may disappointed that Batman and The Outsiders won’t be participating in time travel hijinks, Kaliber and Ishmael still get a lot of time to shine in this issue. Hill is able to develop these characters into players in this book that readers will invest in. Readers may identify with Kaliber as the Kyle Reese-like protector and Ishmael as the relentless T-1000. As a matter of fact, Batman and The Outsiders seem to be supporting characters in their own book as much of the attention is focused on Sofia, Kaliber, and Ishmael.

Hill also gives Ishmael ample opportunity to make an impact as a character. Ishmael pretty much wipes the floor with everyone in this issue, and his powers are creepy but cool. Ishmael’s character model however is pretty lacking. You can only be so imposing with a Mr. T haircut. Despite the silly haircut, Ishmael acting on the will of Ra’s Al Ghul continues to be interesting to watch develop. What is Ra’s Al Ghul’s endgame? I hope we see more of the Demon’s Head in this series.

Dexter Soy’s art continues to be good. Some of Soy’s characters’ faces look strange as particular panels call for more details, but overall Soy’s artwork compliments the book. Gandini’s colors compliment Soy’s art and the colors pop during actions sequences in the issue.

Sofia begins to find the hero within herself after reaching her lowest moment. Sofia pretended to be a hardened survivor ready to defend herself, but in reality she is a scared young woman mourning the death of her parents. Sofia’s interactions with Kaliber were very entertaining and I look forward to seeing more of her dynamic. “Fragile” might stick as a codename, as I see a heroic future for Sofia, possibly on the Outsiders. Maybe Kaliber will join the team with her.

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Marcus Freeman

Marcus Freeman

Bay Area bred, LA livin Blerd. Avid fan of comics, video games, music, wrestling, the Lakers, and the 49ers. Constantly catching up on DVR’d TV shows. Spends a little too much money at movie theaters. Also passionate about serving my community and providing the youth with tools for success.
Summary
While The Outsiders have been dispatched to find and rescue Sofia, Sofia and Kaliber have to survive on their own with Ishmael hot on their heels. Sofia is still processing the trauma she’s endured in her life and now has to look over her shoulder because Ra’s Al Ghul has plans for her. Sofia may need to channel the strength within her if she is to survive this ordeal.
Good
  • Sofia and Kaliber develop into more fully formed characters
  • Ishmael is a beast
  • Fun dynamic between Sofia and Kaliber
Bad
  • Outsiders are relegated to supporting characters in their own book
  • Time travel tease in last issue sort of makes me disappointed that it won't happen
8.2
Great
Story - 8.5
Art - 7.5
Character Development - 8.5
Written by
Bay Area bred, LA livin Blerd. Avid fan of comics, video games, music, wrestling, the Lakers, and the 49ers. Constantly catching up on DVR’d TV shows. Spends a little too much money at movie theaters. Also passionate about serving my community and providing the youth with tools for success.

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