Comic Book Review: Damage #9
Information is power, and for Ethan and Damage that means everything when the truth comes to light about these missions they have been sent on. The dynamic of this story is just great. Two sides that really work off of each other so well because you can understand what each opposing force is fighting for. Ethan is fighting for his freedom from something that he didn’t sign up for. Then you have Colonel Jonas here who simply wants a solution to soldiers having to be used as cannon fodder
The point which this issue picks up from is great considering this fight here was a long time coming. It didn’t happen the way that Colonel Jonas had hoped initially, but this is what you get when going after a walking WMD. This was a time where you couldn’t help but root for Ethan since this is the version of him we have wanted to see from the start. The version who doesn’t completely hate the other side of him, who isn’t afraid of what happens when letting loose, or caring about the damage they are about to inflict. That’s not to say you couldn’t get why he would be hesitant about giving the driving wheel to Damage, but it is more refreshing these days when you have someone like him who is able to own what he is. Even if that moment is temporary.
With that said, the action was every bit as thrilling as you would have hoped for it to be. Damage may not be the kind of powerhouse that will put you down in one hit, but he is a truck that won’t stop swinging till you do. That fact alone made the much more engaging with the black-ops team able to continue to show what makes them formidable. Of course you still knew how it would end for them, but I think they served as a perfect example of how far Ethan and Damage have been pushed to a point where there was little reason to really hold back as they would have before. The last time they went all out, was probably the first issue, so this was worth the wait. Having Unknown Solider around to team-up with wasn’t bad either. It was a good reminder of what makes this guy so dangerous. He’s a killer, yet at the same time he’s someone you want to listen to given the experience he has had on the both sides of the coin.
Now the character writing here was what grabs your attention the most. Action is great, but it’s what follows after which brings it all together. It makes a big difference when you put these two opposing forces together and create the room to air out the frustrations. For Colonel Jonas, this was her time to explain herself, and as I said above you can’t entirely blame her for her actions. Everyone’s motivations and intentions were made clear because this was either going to end with someone giving up, or someone dead.
Different artist this time around, but great work all the same for this team. From the start of this issue I quickly found myself satisfied with the way that they capture Damage. Same physique, same expressions, only a crisper outline. The pencils weren’t as clean, but I felt that this suited the atmosphere of this issue. Ethan and Damage are more erratic, they don’t care too much about the damage they are doing to the surrounding area, so you expect that things will look a bit more rough. The collateral damage they left behind was a big thing. Its something to appreciate when the artist will put that kind of work in to engage the character with the setting. Breaking the walls, the impact to the ground, the many objects that can be used as weapons. It wasn’t just smashing, and that is more appealing than what this could have been if it was just a series of quick action-shots. That aside, the lettering continued to stand out as well. When there is more Damage seen, the letterer has more room to have fun with his distinct text, and the sound effects of when he smashes.
Damage #9 brings this story arc to a close, but the war is far from over. I like that it was established in this issue what it takes for the war to end for Ethan, and what will keep it going for Colonel Jonas. Nothing is definite, and that keeps you guessing what the future holds for Damage in the DCU.