I’ve been a fan of the Terminator series since I was a young boy. In 1984, I was only three years old, so it was some time before I saw the adventures of Kyle Reese (Michael Biehn) trying to protect Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) against the T-800 Terminator played by Arnold Schwarzenegger. Throughout the years and subsequent sequels, I’ve stayed a fan of the series, despite is shortcomings with Salvation and the parts of Terminator 3 which are just plain horrible. I am excited to see Terminator: Genisys, and I hope that they keep with the spirit of the James Cameron classic films of Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgement Day.
When I was given the opportunity to check out the Dark Horse Comics mini-series, Terminator: Enemy of my Enemy; I jumped at the chance. I was interested in reading a story that took place outside the world of the Connors and that’s just what this story does. The original comics debuted last February, but this was the first time that all six issues were put together in a Trade Paperback. Spoilers Lie Ahead.
The story follows Farrow Greene as she’s sent on a the task of delivering a scientist, Dr. Elise Fong, to a rival pharmaceutical company. Along the way she encounters a Terminator whose sent to dispose of the doctor. The two of them must team up as a third party needs Fong to help them perfect the creations of their own Terminators. They decide it’s better to get Dr. Fong away from them by working together, and then figure out afterwards what to do with the Doctor. Kill or deliver to her rival. Does the plot sound a wee-bit confusing? It is. I’m sorry but there’s not really an easy way to explain it. I caught myself getting lost a few times and just kinda let it go over my head as the action ramped up.
The plot was a bit threadbare and/or confusing at times and it sometimes took me out of the book. Farrow is a very interesting character that the writer, Dan Jolley, took the time to flesh out. The only problem is that he threw in elements of the past in a way that didn’t always work. We know that Farrow tragically lost her brother and it helped shaped her to the woman she is now; but the way that flashback fit in didn’t quite work. It happened a couple other times as well.
More than the past plot points that didn’t quite fit, I was also wondering what happened in the future. I couldn’t quite understand why the Terminator needed to kill Fong if she helped the other Black Ops team perfect the Terminator. Wouldn’t he want her to do that in order to create him? The motivations of the T-800 were never really fleshed out in my opinion.
What did work, and worked very well, was the action in this comic. Jamal Igle did a great job depicting the action scenes that Farrow and the T-800 got involved with. It was surprising that there wasn’t swearing in the comic, but if the Terminator needed to blow-off a guys head with a shotgun; they had free reign. Farrow was a complete badass as she went toe-to-toe with the Terminator. Plus, I thoroughly loved the disintegration of the Terminator’s flesh as it went from human to Exo-Skeleton throughout the course of the comics. Blood and bullets flew through the air and it was quite a sight to see.
Ultimately, if you’re a fan of the series, I would recommend this book but keep in mind that the plot gets a little wonky. It definitely FEELS more like a piece in the Terminator history than Salvation or even Terminator 3 does; and for that it gets high marks. They leave the end pretty open so we may see a sequel in the future and I’d be interested to see what happens to Farrow. I just hope they take a bit out of the James Cameron playbook and focus on the plot as much as they do the action.