It’s faint praise but Checkmate was an improvement over the first issue. Brian Michael Bendis is still writing in a disjointed manner with needless switching back and forth between different frames. Since his dialogue is confusing enough in a linear format jumping around to various time periods quickly makes for a confusing read.
Mark Shaw corners Talia al Ghul while Green Arrow and The Question back up Lois Lane as she visits her father’s old home. Naturally this would be the time for Leviathan’s men to come gunning for her.
The highlight of the issue is not surprisingly the Green Arrow and Question sequences. A Bendis Green Arrow book — focusing on Oliver Queen not as a member of the Justice League or Checkmate — could be great if only he was given that gig instead of the other.
Alex Maleev’s art was easier to follow this installment thanks to more daytime settings.
Bendis fails to sell the notion that take on Checkmate is necessary at this point or why the story matters with so many characters and events moving well past Event Leviathan. At least this issue suggests there can be some redeeming parts through this journey.
Rating: 6 out of 10