Hood and the Outlaws #21 continues to take this series in surprising new directions.
With the Red Hood out on the run after losing his memories, Arsenal and Starfire are left to decide what their next course of action should be, and it does not help that they are being manipulated and sold out by Hugo Strange.
The three outlaws are being guided by respective parties. Left without his memories, Jason is encountered by the League of Assassins, who he trained with when he was younger. Meanwhile, Arsenal has an appointment with his shrink, Hugo Strange. Strange’s purposes are not sincere, or to help the Outlaws in any way.
The Untitled also play a role in this issue, but I can not give away their motive without spoiling the entire story.
This is not the type of story I expected to encounter from a series like Red Hood and the Outlaws. Instead of the Red Hood, a tough vigilante who bends the rules to deliver justice, and his rebellious partners, Arsenal and Starfire, bringing their tough brand of justice to Gotham City, instead, they are caught in the crossfire of a secret organization, and a group of supernaturals.
While this is certainly not the approach I would take to writing this series, the story IS actually good. The Outlaws are not able to fully trust anybody, and the reader is also unsure of who to trust. There is true ambiguity in these pages, the story is very unpredictable, and I finished the issue without any clue as to who the good guys are, and if there even are any good guys. For the uncertainty and ambiguity of the story, I have to give credit to the writer James Tynion IV.
Julius Gopez is the artist. His style falls on the photorealistic side. The color used is dull, but not in a bad way. The art team’s vision fits the overall tone of the story well.
I am a big fan of the Red Hood, and this storyline is not what I want for a character like his, but that does not mean the story is bad. There are many positives of this story, and I am genuinely interested to see what happens next because nobody can be trusted in the mess that the Outlaws have found themselves in.