This issue should be controversial. Wally West who has always been heroic runs from a fight against Deathstroke who is now faster than in the past. Wally admits that he is afraid for his life. Will Deathstroke succeed in going back in time to save his son, the first Ravager, from death?
Christopher Priest has been writing this from the first issue where we saw flashbacks of this. Reviving Ravager or allowing Deathstroke to make amends was in the books from the start but most of us never saw it coming. Priest showed us the damaged relationship between father and son and we just assumed it was exposition on Deathstroke’s origin and a retelling of older stories about his sons and his family. But Priest does this all the time. He plants these things well-ahead of time and they just bloom in your face when you least expect it.
Mixing this with both Titans teams makes this story better than ever. Many of them have parts to play in this. We finally understand what deal Nightwing made with Slade Wilson years ago. The most controversial part of this issue is Wally West running away from a fight like a coward, after he realizes that he cannot defeat Deathstroke if the latter is as fast as him. I dislike this because Wally West has used super speed since he was a kid. Is Deathstroke as fast as he claims? He ran back in time but is that enough? Is Wally West nothing but a guy who runs fast? What about all the things he has accomplished over the years; all the lives he has saved? Is there nothing else to Wally West than a guy who runs super fast?
The artwork in this chapter is the best of the entire storyline. Carlo Pagulayan did get help with wonderful layouts by Larry Hama. I’m hoping that when Deathstroke becomes a monthly title, that Pagulayan will be able to remain as the only artist on this series. While I enjoy Joe Bennett’s work, I prefer Pagulayan to the regular DC Comics’ s house style.