Review: Garth Ennis’ Red Team #7
All hell breaks loose as Red Team is targeted by an unexpected enemy, and Trudy and Eddie are forced to fight for their lives. When the dust settles, the survivors must face justice for their crimes from an unexpected quarter. Our heroes learn the true cost of their bloody mission!
The penultimate installment of Red Team hit way back in November, but the conclusion finally arrives this week with the release of issue #7. The story is written by Garth Ennis with art by Craig Cermak. Adriano Lucas provides colors with Rob Steen tackling lettering. Issue six ended on a huge cliffhanger, so was the finale worth the four month wait?
The final showdown between Red Team and O’Dwyer’s group of dirty cops that were living in the same outside-the-law territory as the Red Team began with a bang. Red Team lost two of their own and only Eddie and Trudy are the only two left to stand against the combined might of O’Dwyer and his group of killers. While the Red Team had a code, this other group are butchers out to do nothing but line their pockets. Trudy and Eddie have to take them all down. They’re outgunned and outmaneuvered, but they have to try. In the present day we see the ramifications of these series of events and what the price is. Trudy and Eddie survive, which we knew since they’re telling us the story, but would they have been better off dying in the shootout? What will the NYPD do about two of their special tasks force going rogue and taking the law into their own hands? Who have they been talking to anyway?
Ennis writes an intense and dramatic finale. All the cards were flipped over last time, and now it’s just seeing how things played out between Red Team beginning their crusade and how they ended up locked up in an interrogation room telling their story. Things play out in some incredibly unexpected ways and Ennis is able to pull off some big twists before the final page comes around. Cermak’s art is a real highlight. This has been a dialogue and drama heavy story, so the artist has had to do some heavy lifting, but the finale lets Cermak really cut loose and play with some big action moments. Ennis and Cermak combine to pull off a cinematic experience with a Scorsese ‘The Departed’ vibe. Lucas’ colors really elevate things since the showdown plays out at sunset. Things look very warm yet ominous.
Bottom Line: Taken as a whole, Red Team is a top notch crime drama of the likes only Garth Ennis could pull off in comic book form. The long delays have killed the bursts of momentum the series has gained toward the back half, and that undoubtedly effects the score. For that reason and that reason alone it gets a 3.5/5
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