Gail Simone has at times referred to the way characters are selected for a book as being “crayons on the table” – that different writers sometimes talk to each other and their editors about which characters may be used in a a particular title, and you pull the “crayons” (or characters) from the middle of the table to your book. You may not always get the crayons you want…except possibly for SECRET SIX #4!
Long time SECRET SIX fans (like me) will be shouting for joy with the characters who are brought in as antagonists of our present team in this issue. No spoilers here, but if you aren’t exceptionally happy by the end of this issue then you are simply not paying attention. However, even THAT may not be the big event in this issue.
We are finally given something that was hinted at in issue #3 – the revelation that…..
Porcelain is revealed to be genderfluid. This is handled EXACTLY as it should be in this issue – a matter-of-fact revelation that is accepted by the team without judgment. Being transgender is simply a part of who Kani is, and Big Shot’s reaction is wonderful…just check out the issue for that. Big Shot may not be up to the times, but at least his heart is big enough to accept his teammates for who they are. Of course, Big Shot himself may not be who HE seems to be…which brings me to my own suspicions about the identity of Big Shot (if only his nose would start twitching…). But, for now, let’s just say that this issue gives the readers a LOT of fun, and it’s something that should make any SECRET SIX fan thrilled.
I will gladly admit to a huge bias when it comes to SECRET SIX. I have copies of everything from VILLAINS UNITED forward, and this volume of SECRET SIX already lives up to the high standards set by its predecessors. We are still setting the table in some respects, watching newer members like the Ventriloquist and Strix fitting in with more classic members like Catman. But, it works – no surprise there. And, while we are setting the table for this new run, it’s a very good thing to see the revelations in this issue. Before we go, let’s also give credit where credit is due to the art team behind this issue – Ken Lashley and Tom Derenick, with Jason Wright on colors and Travis Lanham on Don’t miss it!