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CSBG Archive

A Year of Cool Comics – Day 254

Here is the latest in our year-long look at one cool comic (whether it be a self-contained work, an ongoing comic or a run on a long-running title that featured multiple creative teams on it over the years) a day (in no particular order whatsoever)! Here‘s the archive of the comics posted so far!

Today we take a look at the great Suicide Squad story where Waller has to send the team after one of their own in “Final Round,” by John Ostrander, Luke McDonnell and Kark Kesel!


In Suicide Squad #21, Amanda Waller managed to outmaneuver two political figures, Derek Tolliver and Senator Joseph Cray, who were blackmailing Waller and the Suicide Squad. However, Rick Flag did not know this, so he thought that Tolliver and Cray were still a threat. So he went to Tolliver’s office and assassinated him.

In #22, Waller is in a very awkward position of having to send the rest of the Squad against their AWOL leader to protect the Senator who wanted to blackmail them!

Deadshot, by the way, was just coming back from the trauma of his mini-series, where he re-lived his terrible family past.

Here’s a great bit where the “good” members of the team and the “bad” members split up…

Well handled by Ostrander and his artists.

And, of course, here’s the most famous scene of the issue…

Now for what happens NEXT (including some of the best Squad dialogue ever), you should go find yourself this issue in the back issue bins (or online). It’s easy to find and should be cheap enough (I just checked eBay and there are a number of copies for roughly 5 bucks, shipping included).

If the Squad were more famous, that Deadshot scene would have been on the Top 75 Most Memorable Moments in DC History for sure!


I was lucky enough to read this scene and this era of Suicide Squad as it came out, from my college bookstore of all places. What an amazing comic.

Re-reading the complete series at the moment and Ostrander’s writing is amazing. It’s funny, interesting, exciting, and all the characters are treated with respect, even if they end up dead at the end. I like Secret Six as much as anyone, but it’s predecessor is so far above it. I’ll probably check out some of his other work afterwards since I do have his Spectre run, but never have read it.

I also love that in the letters page, the books getting the most love from DC at the time were Suicide Squad, JLI, Doom Patrol, Animal Man, and Sandman; all books still regarded as the best from that era.

This…THIS and the whole following issue are the reasons why Floyd Lawton is neck and neck with Slade Wilson as my fav DC “bada$$es”….

Luke McDonnell is such an underrated artist; though here he has Karl Kesel inks, so it looks even better than normal. Love Flag’s facial expression after Deadshot kills the senator. And Ostrander is brilliant as his run in SS always was.

I read these as they were being published by Zinco in Spain, too bad some things got lost in translation ( ie: Waller’s nickname The Wall didn’t survive the trip, it doesn’t really make much sense to call her “La Muralla” without knowing english) but hey, at least it enabled a lot of spanish speakers to follow this series, up to Flag’s mission against the Jihad at least.

I so agree that McDonald and Kessel made this book rock. McDonald always gets dogged for his art, but I always found it solid.

So awesome. Any DC comics fan not making an effort to read this entire series is a fool. The issues are cheap.

DC needs to reprint these in their entirety.

@stealthwise: They are, starting in February.

Really, they are going to reprint Suicide Squad? I’ll have to look for that since I read of all the SS love here.

Although haven’t they announced that they were reprinting that before? Wasn’t there going to be a Showcase volume of it?

God I loved this series! There is a reason it keeps turning up in this here column.
I love when I loan my back issues to comic fans who have never read it before, and the looks on their faces after they get through the first handful of issues… it’s the look you used to see when people read their first issue of Claremont X-Men, only without the same level of fan recognition.
One of the greatest series of all-time, I say!

Grimjack, Suicide Squad and the Martian Manhunter were three reasons I started a John Ostrander box in my collection. I wish that DC would reprint Suicide Squad and Martian Manhunter in their Deluxe HC format.

I’m a huge fan of the Suicide Squad and Deadshot in particular. This was one of those issues where you really knew that you weren’t dealing with heroes or villains-turning-into-heroes. Some of these guys were just BAD.

Despite how much I thought of this issue, I think that Deadshot had three greater moments during the series. One was when he jumped out of a plane over Russia, one was the final issue with Count Vertigo and the last was when he wore his costume even though there was a bullet hole in the forehead.

Yeah, people could hunt for back issues to find out what happens or they could just look for the Day 71 write-up you did in the Year of Cool Comic Book Moments last year. Between these two entries you’ve scanned and spoon-fed us just about the whole issue.

Jeez, Brian. You should just go the whole nine and scan the entire series and put that online so there won’t be anymore complaining about a collected edition.

I’m joking. I love the Sqad and this column, but it would be great to have the whole run collected online so I could just direct people to a website and say, “There! That’s why I won’t shut up about the Suicide Squad!”

I love this series and Deadshot became one of my favorite DC characters because of it. Lawton seems completely amoral but you just can’t resist rooting for him.

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