Comic Book Review: Damage #8
After the events of Damage #7, this was the best time to shake things up. There is a time for understanding, and then a time for wheels to get turning. Meaning that there comes a time where running shouldn’t be the only option. Not when Ethan can finally confront what was done to him and what he would do with that truth known. The expectation is that we can reach a true point of escalation where there is no turning back.
Once again it was very engaging to see a different side to Colonel Jonas who has much more going on with her than what we were initially seeing on the surface. It made a big difference to finally understand why she went to such lengths to create Damage, and why she is so intent on having that power for use by the government. It might not be what Ethan signed up for, but you can’t argue with the perspective of someone who has seen good soldiers fall and wants a grand alternative to the losses. This further fueled the reaction we were waiting for when she finally had a chance to confront her military ops team on their latest failure in capturing Damage and Ethan. For this issue, this game of cat and mouse turned into a race against time when there was little time to secure Ethan before he could transform again. With that sense of urgency kicked in, the momentum picked up and never let up till the very end.
Now this new situation for Ethan was refreshing since his options in escape were quite limited. Being in a hospital means that there is no room to transform and put a bunch of civilians at risk. It was very surprising seeing how the help Ethan had to look forward to this time was from the Unknown Soldier. For as many times as I’ve seen this character in the DC Universe, admittedly I will say that there is very little I know about him. That fortunately did make it exciting to see what he had in store for someone who is a walking WMD. I was actually a little more shocked that I didn’t connect the dots to see that the Unknown Soldier was exactly who Ethan was looking for from his dreams. This side to the guy was actually much different from what I was usually exposed to. I knew he could be cold-hearted, but I had never seen what this character is like when he is not.
The understanding of the Unknown Soldier’s part in this and the truth about what Ethan was forced to do as Damage was only as impactful as the execution and reaction. Both of which I believed was handled very well. What grabs our attention here was the state of mind that Ethan is put into now that he knows enough to act upon knowledge in contrast to instinct.
Little developments such as the relationship of Ethan and Damage explored through the rules of these twenty-four hours was much appreciated. Every but helps in knowing their limits and how they act based upon this.
The artwork for this issue was very appealing. Right now, what makes Damage standout compared to the rest of the New Age of Heroes stories is the way this one is set up through breakdowns. Nothing says fast-paced and action-packed than a good breakdown and script that carries a story with momentum. This issue was one where we need to be knocked at the edge of our seats, and this art team succeeded in this through the transition from panel to panel, while at the same time nailing the use of the clock as it ran down. It was very important to take from this that all of the events unfolded over the course of ten minutes. With that said, excellent detail from Diogenes Neves’ pencils. Like before, you recognize the work that he puts into the characters, the settings, and what it looks like when you are fighting a monster and worrying about the destruction caused from it. Considering the little action, it was a bit more important to focus on the facial expressions and reactions which added to the intensity of this chapter since there was a lot at stake between Jonas being so close to capturing Ethan, and Ethan finding out what he was being used for.The expressions were very strong, and it was great that even a character like the Unknown Soldier could show those shift in expression through the bandages on his face.
Damage #8 had a good balance between being informative and delivering on the action that you expect from this series. Overall this issue really opened our eyes to the argument that is what it means to be a soldier and the difference between being that and being a superhero.