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‘The Unexpected #7’ (review)

Written by Steve Orlando
Illustrated by Ronan Cliquet
Published by DC Comics


“Come then guardian. You and your broken friends…

… Face the Vampire God!”


And they do.

Not much to say about this one, folks. Mandrakk, demon Monitor, formerly cast into the deepest pit of dark matter in a darkling multiverse, has once again risen to feed upon all life, all creation, in our own positive matter multiverse, and only Neon, Firebrand and Hawkman are there to stop him.

That’s a cue for a battle royale, and the creative team of Steve Orlando, Ronan Cliquet and colorist Jeromy Cox serve up exactly that, in all its no-hold-barred glory.

Mandrakk is impossibly powerful, but that doesn’t stop our heroes from throwing everything they can at him to knock him down. It seems little question they are engaged in a fool’s quest, but they do not blink, don’t think twice. The stakes are too high, their need too desperate to think of doing anything less.

The fate of the Multiverse itself at stake.

Bad enough. But add the newly resurrected Alden Quench, the Bad Samaritan to the fray, and an already dire situation becomes shot through with further gravity – a timeless battle of Creation and Destruction, waged here anew by their agents, in a world between worlds beneath the Bleed of a blood red sky.

The whole thing is glorious and insane and about as high level over the top as it gets.

Mandrakk is wonderfully realized by Cliquet and Cox, all infernal glowing eyes and maniacal bloodthirst. The Bad Samaritan is bare-knuckle crass and disdainful power incarnate. Carter Hall is relentlessly heroic. Firebrand can barely muster enough from her own immortal engine to keep herself in the fray. And Neon – our mysterious Mage of Creation is caught between his arch-nemesis and the devil he doesn’t know, in a desperate offense and defense of digital tri-color transmutations.

All the while Mandrakk drops wonderful meta-comments like only a former Monitor could. Little tidbits about how he can see the stories of our characters, and the new odd-numbered mystery of the Multiverse itself, and all the while we understand that really nothing is capable of standing in his way.

Except perhaps his own cruel stupidity.

It all comes to a head this month. And the action doesn’t let up for a second. This is one story to really sink your teeth into.

Speaking of meta-comments maybe there’s an answer there. Sure as hell hope so.

Next Issue: Reader’s Indigestion?


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