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Suicide Squad Rebirth #1

Written by Rob Williams
Art by Philip Tan
Published by DC Comics

You may have heard about this little summer movie out this week, Suicide Squad, based on a revered 80s book about supervillains forced by the government to take on dangerous missions in exchange for reduced sentences. The version on the big screens is going to include Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Jared Leto as the Joker, and Will Smith as Deadshot, and it’s primed to just print its own money. So DC wisely timed the Rebirth issues of Harley Quinn and Suicide Squad for today.

In this jumping-on issue, President Obama finds out about Task Force X and tells Amanda Waller to shut that down. So she recruits decent guy Colonel Rick Flag from his cell at Guantanamo to lead Harley Quinn, Boomerang, and Deadshot against a plot to send superpowered terrorists against the United States. The first mission takes some dark turns, but the team is able to complete the mission and set up for more adventures.

The book already won me over by the end of the third page. See, I didn’t read New 52 Suicide Squad. This was the book that put Harley Quinn in three square inches of fabric and turned Amanda Waller into Halle Berry. The book may have been great, but I couldn’t get past the female objectification on the cover. And this book has restored Amanda Waller to the imposing, powerful, large woman that we just can’t see anywhere else in comics despite the prevalence in our real lives. Harley gets to wear pants and a jacket. The felons of the Squad are bad guys, but they don’t spend too much time trying to make jokes like Deadpool and instead focus on just getting their mission done. It’s a grim tone but not overly so, and the violent twists in the mission are graphic but feel earned and set this book apart from the senseless gore of previous DC titles.

This book is setting up for a great series. Get a copy, and then join Ultimate At The Movies for Suicide Squad this weekend!

-MATT CONNER for Ultimate Comics