Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Dan Abnett
Artwork: V Ken Marion (pencils), Sandu Florea (inks)
Colours: Mike Spicer
Release Date: 24th April 2019
The Silencer is the best DC comic you’ve never read.
So I’m going to keep reviewing The Silencer till more people read it.
As I mentioned in my last review, Honor Guest (yes, I know, still, bear with me) is a genetically engineered assassin for Leviathan, Talia’s shadowy organisation first introduced by Grant Morrison, with the power to create zones of total silence. Having tried to retire, and been co-opted back into the organisation, she’s now having to risk exposing the fact Talia’s attempt to brainwash her with the Lazarus Pit haven’t been entirely successful, as she hunts down one of her super-siblings, Smoke.
It’s a great comic, and one of the best things to come out of DC’s “New Age of Heroes”. It’s increasingly relevant to the wider DCU, with “Leviathan Rising” dominating Action Comics in the post-1000 era (in other words – go read issue AC #1002 this week too). But more than that, it’s consistently entertaining and action-packed, with a believable protagonist (even if the Retired Hitman trope is pretty familiar) and it’s ALWAYS accessible. In an era of increasingly convoluted timelines, crossovers, backstories and event comics, this wears Abnett’s grounding in 2000AD on its sleeve: you can always pick an issue and read it.
The art’s gutsy, and shows off the talent without detracting from the narrative. The Zone of Silence is rendered effectively (which, when you think about it, is no mean feat for the visual medium) and there’s a neat use of the powers in this issue that will make you react with a little bit of glee (as, in fact, it does to the members of Leviathan watching her, in one of the stand-out moments of the issue).
Smoke is drawn well, also, and the fight scenes are dynamic and well-constructed. But, in Smoke, we also get what the series really needs, an entirely believable, sympathetic… antagonist. I can’t describe her as a villain, as that would be unfair to her; despite the awful things she’s prepared to do, Abnett’s writing has us rooting for her almost as much as Silencer.
Great comic. Go read if you like DC, go read if you don’t.