This contains two stories. The first, March to War, allows Vaughan to use his talent to elegantly introduce global politics into the mix. This is an excellent story that reminds you that, in conflicts there are very few winners.
The second story, Life and Death, reveals the character of Pherson that we have heard so much about. Unfortunately this arrival is telegraphed before the story setting any impact up to fail. The story is too short and resolves the episode too neatly sabotaging future potential. This is an opportunity lost and quite a contrast to the superb lead story.
The art – or rather the colouring – is fantastic. Absolutely fantastic, with bold choices being made. The tonal washes go into overdrive and despite having a very unnatural feel they work superbly. There are some panels that use alternating colours for the two sides of a phone call that really pop out.
This is the best of stories, this is the worst of stories, but the art guarantees it a Thumbs Up!
Tomorrow: Ex Machina: Smoke Smoke – Brian K. Vaughan