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Black Adam #5 (of 12)

Comicscore Index
Generally favorable ratings

Based on 5 critic ratings.


Theo Teth-Adam faces off against a furious Bruce Wayne as Black Adam confronts threats ranging from a rising democratic movement in Kahndaq to the Akkad, a new pantheon of gods from outer space who create a new herald to represent them on Earth in Sargon the Sorcerer, and Adam becomes inextricably linked to a young protégé who has contracted the same plague that nearly killed Adam.

Publication Date
Kindle Edition
Print Lenght
25 pages
Amazon ASIN

5 Critic Ratings & Reviews from:
  • 90

    DC Comics News

    There are a lot of really cool, high-concept ideas going on in Black Adam #5. Priest has decided to approach the character from an utterly bizarre angle that feels unusual for a character like Adam. The series so far has been steeped in mythology, theology, and DC comics lore/continuity. All of this speaks to Priest’s greatest strengths, and flaws, as a writer: he doesn’t write comic books but rather serialized graphic novels. Similar to the works of Grant Morrison, Priest’s Black Adam will undoubtedly read better as a trade paperback.

  • 85

    Geek Dad

    Priest’s books are often elaborate puzzle boxes, and that’s definitely the case with this fascinating take on Egyptian mythology. Black Adam has played a major role, of course, but so has Malik White—the young med student who the dictator gives his powers to in the first issue. But that doesn’t mean White has taken over the title, as some feared. Instead, this book has become a compelling network of storylines, and neither of them actually appear in the first few pages. Instead, a new antagonist emerges, a new take on the sorcerer Sargon of Arkkad. Priest is not only pulling from the earliest days of DC mythology, but from ancient legend, and the segments are fascinatingly dark. But that’s oddly contrasted with Malik’s storyline, as he’s often caught up in overly broad fish-out-of-water storylines. I’m just not sure Priest’s writing style meshes with this kind of character.

    On the other hand, his take on Black Adam is genuinely brilliant. This is a version of the character that fuses some of the more human elements that are likely to make their way into the upcoming movie, with the more ruthless dictator who made his debut long ago. Priest has always done a god job with geopolitical elements and this issue shows us just how thorny the political situation in Khandaq is. When a pilot on a suicide mission is taken out by Black Adam, that gets the attention of Bruce Wayne—who is ready to put his plan to remove Black Adam from the battlefield permanently into motion. Priest wrote Batman pretty extensively as a guest-star in Deathstroke as well, and he really seems to like using him as the implacable adversary to a villain protagonist. This is one of the strangest issues of the series yet, but somehow it all fits together into a compelling whole.

  • 80

    The opening sequences of Black Adam #5, set primarily in or adjacent to the history of Khandaq, are some of the best the series has to offer thus far. Readers are first given a sense of what the Mesopotamian gods are doing with all of Priest’s idiosyncratic humor and mundane charms set beside metaphysical forces. The following confrontation between Teth-Adam and a grieving father and husband is even more powerful – confronting readers with a truly impossible scenario and the strangest sense of mercy imaginable. It makes what follows as Malik and Adam are both set up for future trials and confrontations in the miniseries’ back half more exciting, primarily because it instills a sense of faith that every set up will feature a pay off in future issues. Black Adam continues to build and it’s forming quite the monument to this Arabic anti-hero.

  • 80

    Women Write About Comics - WWAC

  • 60

    Major Spoilers

    As with any Priest story, Black Adam #5 isn’t really light reading, nor does it seem to be particularly germane to the big recent movie opening, but there are some very interesting things being built in these pages, even with some confusing transitions and mismatched art. It’s been a while since Black Adam was much more than Billy Batson without restraint, so seeing him as a character shaped by his ancient past and massive powers is a welcome change.

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