Deathstroke #36 Review

Written by Christopher Priest
Pencils by Ed Benes, Carlo Pagulayan, and Fernando Pasarin
Inks by Richard Friend, Jason Paz, and Wade von Grawbadger
Colored by Jeromy Cox

Living around a life of crime you learn that evil people can be hard to stop. Evil people have lawyers, lawyers know how to get you through the cracks in the system, but if the prosecution is able to convince everyone that maybe the bad guy isn’t just evil, maybe they do what they do because they’re truly insane. At that point, they are few lawyers who can talk your way out of entering a padded room, and that’s where we start this story. Deathstroke has now been locked up as a patient in Arkham Asylum, and it’s time for some much needed therapy.

Inside the walls of Arkham Asylum we get to see a unique perspective of how the patients spend their time in their cells. For some it means being strapped up for the safety of others. For those who more mentally stable it can mean just watching their favorite movies or working on their research, but for Slade Wilson it means questioning why he’s here, questioning his own sanity and eventually putting his delusions to the test.

One of my favorite parts of this issue is the unique way writer Christopher Priest separates his books into different segments and chapters: headlining each segment with a new title that briefly tells us what kind of theme to expect or what character we might be jumping to the perspective of. In this book we jump around a bit from Slade’s time spent in Arkham and his group therapy sessions. Then we’ll see what kind of trouble Rose Wilson is getting into. The other character we briefly jump to is Slade’s son Jericho who didn’t really have much going on, but I’ve learned with Christopher priest stories to never overlook any small string as it may play a bigger role later on.

The art style in this book was very dark and bloody, but it also featured a high level of detail and a wide range of expressions and emotions that were all captured quite well and all did a good job to help convey the current state of mind that Slade is living in during his stay at Arkham. One of the coolest parts about this story is that since it takes place inside Arkham, it means we get to see artwork featuring a whole rogues gallery of villains like Mr Freeze, Two Face, Mad Hatter, Hugo Strange and Solomon Grundy. Then we see how they all interact with Deathstroke in battle, which were my favorite panels in this issue. We also see them all in VR group therapy sessions which is a sentence I never thought I’d type, but I am glad I got to because the scene was pretty funny.

Overall I’d say if you’ve been following Deathstroke throughout his Rebirth run, then this is definitely a must pickup issue and is worth following along to see where the terminators journey through Arkham goes from here and to find out if Deathstroke really is crazy or if it’s all in his head.

I give Deathstroke 36 a 6 out of 10

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