blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Absolution (2022) #5

Absolution  5Writer Peter Milligan takes another approach with this issue’s narrative distance, back to Nina heavily narrating, but now she’s interrogating herself. As the deadline for Absolution draws near, she has to ask herself questions about who she wants to be. Or something. Milligan hints at what’s behind her character development, but he’s boxed Nina in, so she can’t do anything with it. She can’t even think it to herself. Otherwise, the reader would be clued in, and Milligan couldn’t do a twist.


The issue also trashes the concept of the series as a procedural. When Nina does get around to the series’s last mission, Milligan shoehorns it in. He also repeats a story twist from last issue with it, which is something he just did last issue. I thought Absolution was a four-issue series stretched to five, but it’s a three stretched to four stretched to five. Milligan just decorates the story beats a little differently.

He also doesn’t give artist Mike Deodato Jr. anything interesting to draw this issue. I mean, torture stuff? A Reservoir Dogs nod? It’s definitely not finale-worthy material. Some of the point is in the anti-climatic nature of the narrative, but… Milligan and Deodato should’ve figured out a way to make it work.

Though Milligan’s narration writing is his worst on the book, I don’t think I’d have kept going if he’d had this narration in the first issue. The most disappointing thing about the bad narration is Milligan’s bored. He’s not blathering on because he’s excited about the content; he’s just trying to write the comic to a finish. It’s mawkish.

Absolution’s been a bumpy ride, but I wasn’t expecting Milligan to run out of gas with the finish line in sight. I mean, I expected the character arc he started last issue to not resolve well in this issue, but he flushes that approach and starts fresh with the bad narration instead.

It’s bewildering. However, it’s also confusing why he never established a distinct storytelling approach. Instead, he tried a bunch—one an issue—but for absolutely no reason in the end.

He had a slick, pulpy exploitation story and went trite with it.


One response to “Absolution (2022) #5”

  1. Vernon W

    And there you go! While AWA doesn’t put out masterpieces, their line keeps churning out books that seem a lot more mainstream than Marvel & DC these days. If you nail one more, Milligan’s Sacrament has a great Aliens/Exorcist vibe. Hit Me had fun with mobsters and sex trade workers. Later with Spider-Man and Batman. Viva la new “heroes”!

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