Subway Shorts – Silencer / Motherlands

A couple of first issues came out this week, with the first issue of the latest series to come out of Dark Nights: Metal – Silencer – joining Motherlands, a new Vertigo tale about mother-daughter bounty hunters traversing the multiverse.

The Silencer 1
Written by Dan Abnett 
Pencils by John Romita Jr.
Inks by Sandra Hope 
Colors by Dean V. White

It’s still so weird seeing John Romita Jr. doing art on DC Comics books, though having his pencils on a comic book featuring a new character helps ease the weirdness. In SILENCER, the lead character is a former assassin named Honor Guest who is being sucked back in to her former life, not because she’s being asked to do a job, but because other assassins are out to take her to settle an old score.

Guest has a husband and a young son. Her idyllic life comes crashing down when a brute comes after her as she finishes shopping with her son. She uses her special abilities to take care of the guy while her son was none-the wiser, but the problems didn’t end there. Her former employer, Talia al Ghul, the daughter of Ra’s al Ghul and the mother of Batman’s son, comes calling to her home to warn her that things are about to escalate. And they do by the end of the issue.

It’s a good take on the former assassin trope, and Abnett scripts a good story with likable characters, but Romita’s art is a tough thing to get used to. His style is still a throwback to a bygone era. That’s not a bad thing, but it’s somewhat jarring among the other books I’m reading. I was more engaged in the story than I was DAMAGE, the first of the “New Age of Heroes” books from a couple of weeks ago, so I’m willing to pick up the second issue and see how things develop.

Motherlands 1
Written by Simon Spurrier 
Pencils and Inks by Rachel Stott
Colors by Felipe Sobreiro

It’s been a while since I’ve picked up a new Vertigo book – I think when I gave up FABLES sequel Everafter was the last time I bought any Vertigo, but the concept of MOTHERLANDS seemed interesting enough, and this was a light week for comics, so why not?

The world of MOTHERLANDS is one where bounty hunters used to be celebrities, with a popular TV show covering their exploits tracking criminals throughout the multiverse. The focus here is on Tabatha, whose mother was the most famous bounty hunter on multiple worlds. Tabatha, though, is not as good a bounty hunter as her mother, struggling to get by bringing in criminals. But a new target has a personal connection to Tabatha and she calls in her retired mother for some help.

The new partnership doesn’t get off to a very good start…

Getting offbeat stories like this is a Vertigo specialty, and the family drama coming here should make for an interesting story going forward. I’m willing to check out the first arc and see how it all plays out.