Writers: David Michelinie & Bob Layton
Artists: Ron Lim (p), Brett Bredding (i)
Publisher: Future Comics
Max Krome returns to plague the Metallix team, who have returned from a mission and are busy dealing with the personality clashes that emerged during their latest adventure. However Max Krome's latest attack serves to resolve these differences for the group, as his attempt to kill everyone inside the lab complex, is prevented by the noble sacrifice of one of our heroes lives.
Since the cover pretty much tells the reader that this issue is going to end with the Metallix group down one member, I don't think I'm spoiling the story by actively discussing the way this removal was handled. Now the personality of the character who was done away with was highly abrasive so I can't say that I was all that sad to see him go, but in a sad way this scene does act to reinforce this character's main problem with the rest of the group, as while it ended his life, at least he got to go out setting a pretty hard to ignore example for the others. Now the long time comic reader in me was quick to note there was no body, so his "death" is somewhat suspect, but then again I don't really see any need to bring the character back so I really don't believe he will be. The final page also offers up a fairly interesting question, in that a member of the group boldly states that the group does have a leader to replace the one they've just lost, and one imagines he's referring to Owen Parrish, which should make for an interesting character dynamic between the four. As for the villain, this issue has the inventor of the metal x making his return, and like most evil scientist types he's returned bearing some fairly impressive weapons, with an evil looking version of the suit, and a rather horrific bomb that instantly vaporizes all organic matter.
Ron Lim continues to deliver some very impressive action scenes, as there's a wonderful sense of motion, and the big impact shots, such as the detonation scene with the bomb, are exceptionally well done. The visual design of the suit that Max Krome wears is also well designed, as it has a nice sinister look about it that leaves one with little doubt that this character is a villain. The abilities of the evil suit are also quite exciting from a visual sense.
A fairly exciting issue in that it killed off one of our lead characters, and while it's a little early in the game for this shocking death to have much emotional impact, it does act to show us that this book is willing to kill off members of it's cast, and this in turn will add a measure of danger to all their future missions. The big, bad villain of this story is Max Krome, who makes for a pretty solid combination of two super-villain types, as he makes for a pretty effective opponent in combat with his evil version of the Metallix suit, but his scientific genius also has him engaging in some actions that are normally only practiced by mastermind style villains. The issue moves along at a nice brisk pace as well, as every single page manages to accomplish something, whether it be the testing scene that gives us a good look at the suit's flight capabilities, or the highly charged fight scene, which offers up some fairly intense moments where it's clear our heroes are in tough.
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