Jason Aaron and Mike Deodato’s “Original Sin” #6 is a perfectly acceptable read, but it lacks the forward momentum and direction to make it truly compelling. There’s arguably merit to slowing the story down before the final two issues, but it doesn’t feel like it’s resting so much as stalling. Bogged down by a great deal of recap from character to character, it inevitably drags — despite having the same evocative artwork from Deodato and line-level quality of writing from Aaron. It’s not going to affect my overall impression of “Original Sin” or turn me off the event, but even with all its great qualities, issue #6 is still overly slow and answerless.
In principle, slowing down for issue #6 makes sense. The first four issues were full of frenzy, and issue #5 was all backstory, so a recap-and-recover issue is a logical next step. It also leaves Aaron with plenty of story for issues #7 and #8. However, the issue is very heavy on recap. It’s necessary to assemble the entire team in the same place and get everyone up to speed, but the reader doesn’t need to see as much of the back-and-forth as is present here. Aaron very nearly gets away with it, as his dialogue is well-written, but when the information isn’t new, there’s a limit to how much of it can keep my attention.
There is admittedly one big reveal. (Skip to avoid spoilers!) Fury reveals that the team has been assembled because he’s looking for his replacement. The first few issues emphasized the mystery of why each person had been chosen and by whom, but since that plot point has (understandably) fallen off in the more recent issues, it didn’t have much payoff for me. It should, however, have significant implications for the event going forward, as the various characters decide whether they want to take up the mantle.
With all these criticisms, it might sound like I disliked “Original Sin” #6, but I actually found it to be a relatively solid issue. It simply isn’t as good as its predecessors. Aaron’s fondness and appreciate for the characters is clear in his dialogue. He has an excellent handle on the group dynamics of his large cast, rarely appearing overwhelmed by the sheer number of them, and that’s not easy with an event book like this.
Deodato’s art is still wonderfully moody and menacing. His dark inks and Eliopoulos’ unobtrusive colors create a mystery atmosphere that gives every scene extra gravity. His style does contribute to some of the malaise of issue #6, but Fury’s ship looks just as full of murderous secrets as any reader could hope. It’s a setting that seems made for Deodato.
All told, “Original Sin” #6 isn’t a bad comic, but its lack of movement is frustrating. On the bright side, that leaves a whole lot of fun for issues #7 and #8.