Writers: Brian Azzarello, Jeff Lemire, Dan Jurgens, Keith Giffen
Artist: Jesus Merino, Dan Green
Frankenstein was lured to S.H.A.D.E.’s Shade City headquarters to embark on a mission to find out what happened at Stormwatch. Frankenstein will be joined by Amethyst and The Atom will transport the two of them across the galaxy via the Phantom Zone. In New York, Tim Drake thinks Batman Beyond is another new pupil of Bruce’s. We then go to the docks and see that The Key and Plastique have recruited Coil to break into Terrifitech. The issue ended on Grifter shot and paralyzed by King Faraday. In exchange for working for Faraday, Grifter will be given the ability to walk again.
In the last issue, we saw things starting to connect. Here, we start to see everyone’s plans start to move forward. Though still a bit light on the action (compared to what we saw in the first two issues), #5 does its job in keeping the reader interested.
Plot Details and Spoilers and Deaths: Oh My!
In New York City, Mr. Terrific launches his uSpheres with a mix of Macworld and New Year’s Eve flare. He doesn’t go into details as to exactly what they do, but we definitely get a hint that they could become very intrusive. The uSpheres are basically a data-store of your life — it’s like Facebook and the NSA had a love-child and put it on steroids.
Grifter, paralyzed, is in a secluded hospital in Maryland. King Faraday explains the situation and gives Grifter a job “ultimatum.” Mocking Faraday at every turn, Faraday has Grifter gagged. The job ultimatum is left as a mystery. The only knowledge given to Grifter is that his new partner, a young girl who is seen at the door, will fill him in on the details, and his ability to walk will be restored once he leaves the facility.
On Cadmus Island, Fury fights off two OMAC Operatives with … um … fury. Right after she finishes, the same young girl that was at Grifter’s door makes an appearance. We find out that Fury was faking an illness to escape. Before Fury can react to the young girl, the young girl’s eyes fire a beam that knocks Fury out.
In New York, Firestorm finally unmerges after weeks of sensory deprivation for Jason. Ronnie and Jason argue and we find out that the war cost Ronnie’s mother her life. Firestorm wasn’t there to save her. Because of trust issues from Jason and Ronnie not wanting to be Firestorm anymore, the two part ways agreeing that Firestorm will now cease to exist. Jason arrives at Dr. Yamazake’s lab to find that Yamazake has been working on a transporter similar to what the Justice League controls. During the war, Yamazake’s wife died in a high-rise building. Her life could’ve been saved had a transporter system been implemented. Yamazake is angered that the Justice League keeps scientific progress from the public and likens them to Gods that want to control everything. Yamazake then shows Jason his current progress — something that will make Mr. Terrific’s uSphere’s pale in comparison. We’re only left with Jason’s shocked reaction to the device.
In Kansas, a person named Tommy has brought Constantine to a corn field at the request of a woman named Midge. It seems that Constantine knows her. The three explore a large circle of barren land in the middle of the field. The ground within the circle cannot support life and has basically been dead since prehistoric times. There’s a further reveal that there are three circles and in each circle, there were nine skeletons that appeared burnt. Autopsies, though, showed no evidence of any burning. On top of that, the skeletons had no blood. The only traces of blood were on the perimeter of the circles. We zoom out to see that the three large circles form Brainiac’s symbol.
Wrapping It Up
After five issues, I guess this is the type of storytelling I’ll have to get use to. There’s a lot of separate plots that seem disparate, but will have some type of small connection in later issues. This week seemed like another plan was in the works. I have to commend the authors for setting up some good mysteries and enticing the readers in wanting to find out more in #6. I’m looking forward to finding out more about the little girl who is now partnered with Grifter, and also what Yamazake has done with his version of the transporter technology.