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Waller vs. Wildstorm #1
DC Comics

Comic Books

‘Waller vs. Wildstorm’ #1 delivers international intrigue in Spencer Ackerman’s comics debut

Amanda Waller is terrifying and I can’t look away.

In Waller vs. Wildstorm #1, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author Spencer Akerman makes his comics debut alongside veteran Evan Narcisse in this adults-only DC Black Label title.

Lois Lane is in Gamorra covering a resistance movement on the fictional Pacific island of Gamorra. The issue cold-opened with an interview she is conducting with resistance leader General Rong, establishing the temporal and geographic setting.

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The writers put their experience telling superhero stories and reporting on the American intelligence apparatus to good use here, weaving the Cold War adventures of Lois Lane with flashbacks to Jackson King’s history with Amanda Waller. Waller and King’s interactions are exceptionally juicy and show how brutal she can be with words alone. Meanwhile, King and Lane navigate their own tense conversation about Waller’s deeds.

Waller vs. Wildstorm #1
DC Comics

This story trusts the reader a lot, which works for and against it. It assumes a level of understanding of history and command of an adult vocabulary while letting tense moments of intersectional drama sit without over-explaining context in a way not particularly common in big two comics. Not referring to our POV character by name until multiple pages into the book, however, can be a touch confusing and can require some backtracking on behalf of the reader to clarify which characters are whom and what their relationships are.

Jesús Merino, Vicente Cifuentes, and Mike Atiyeh do good work in the art department. Characters are in era-appropriate garb in an environment that, while fictional, still feels appropriately placed near the end of the Cold War on a Pacific island. King’s periwinkle polo is especially inspired.

These characters are all navigating the complexities of deciding what it means to protect themselves, do what they believe is the right thing, and do their jobs when circumstances demand they compromise. How it all comes crashing together should be thrilling to read.

Waller vs. Wildstorm #1
‘Waller vs. Wildstorm’ #1 delivers international intrigue in Spencer Ackerman’s comics debut
Waller vs. Wildstorm #1
An intriguing and tense debut for this new adults-only series.
Reader Rating0 Votes
0
Drama!
Intrigue!
Healthy skepticism of American foreign polity and intelligence agencies!
Writers trust their adult audience.
Maybe trusts the reader a little too much.
8.5
Great
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