One of the things I've really enjoyed about this series has been the art, and it's nice to see that the book's new artist Chad Hardin does a fantastic job as its new penciller. He does a solid job organizing his panels in this issue, giving readers an absolutely phenomenal first page. The rest of the issue is just as good: his panels are really easy to read and makes the reading experience as a whole a really enjoyable one. Overall, the art in this comic is a perfect compliment to Venditti's story. The first page will definitely grab you -- the art here is beautiful, the structure is a bit obscure but still easy to read, and it also does a phenomenal job recapping the previous story arc's events for readers who may have missed what happened. It's a great way to start the issue and captures Ystin's nightmare brilliantly. Although the romantic relationship between Ystin and Exoristos seems to be behind them, the creative team does a fantastic job depicting the loyalty that exists between these two characters. The first few panels of this issue really serve to establish that fact and do a good job introducing their commitment to readers.
Once again, Venditti knocks the interactions between these characters out of the park. He does a perfect job balancing humor, adventure and serious moments in this issue, using characters like Vandal Savage as a means of entertaining readers in a humorous way. Hardin's pencils perfectly compliment these panels, capturing the essence of these characters, their interactions, and their expressions brilliantly. You can really sense the emotion through their expressions.
One of the cool things we see here in this issue is a call back to something that we saw in Brian Azzarello's WONDER WOMAN series. This issue gives us a bit more insight into the way that the Amazon warriors work and explains how they obtain their information. It's a great scene and it's a cool little nod to something that was previously explained about the Amazons and their tactics in a different series. Having that moment appear here gives the series a sense of continuity and cohesiveness, something that is important to making this series feel relevant as a whole.
It is honestly difficult to pinpoint anything that was actually bad about this issue. If I had to make one complaint, however, it would probably be that the issue moves a bit too quickly. The reconciliation between Jason and Vandal Savage, for example, happens a bit too quickly and therefore breezes right through.
Overall, this issue was nearly perfect. I loved the pencils and the vibrant colors we get in this issue and I felt the art really complimented the story as a whole. The issue itself is a perfect jumping on point for new readers because it launches a new story arc while maintaining the repercussions of the previous issue and previous arc in a way that is interesting and does not feel overbearing. The result is a really fantastic story that feels as if it comes alive through gorgeous pencils and vibrant colors. It is a comic that is bound to leave you laughing and entertained from beginning to end, and one I highly doubt would leave you disappointed.