Issue by Issue – Men of War #26

Writer – Jack C. Harris
Artist – Dick Ayers
Inker – Romeo Tanghal
Colours – Jerry Serpe
Letters – Milt Snapinn

With the final issue of Men of War, Ulysses Hazard has been sent on a special mission courtesy of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and it sees him teaming up with none other than Sgt. Rock and Easy Company. Already in Tunisia, Easy Company is on a mission of their own when the man called Gravedigger arrives and just as they meet, they find themselves under fire and Sgt. Rock ends up taking a bullet. With Rock out of the picture for the moment, the ranking soldier is Hazard and so it is up to him to lead Easy Company to their destination so that they might open a set of orders given by FDR and to carry out the finale of the mission. Written once again by Jack C. Harris and drawn exceptionally well by the regular creative team of Dick Ayers and Romeo Tanghal, they portray the heroes at their best and doing what they do better than any others and it is not only a story packed with action featuring some of the best characters from any war comic, but it is also a fun read as well. As the soldiers make their way up Nickname Hill, so named as each member of Easy Company gets to prove why they are called what they are called, they find themselves up against some heavy opposition, but Hazard and his compatriots make do and earn their way past with the grit of experience. For a last issue, this book has everything that anyone could want, though it does leave a couple of plot threads still dangling, namely what happens to Gravedigger after this and what becomes of the Undersecretary and all his scheming. Those are at least two questions of many that will go unanswered as this story features nothing by Hazard in his prime, leading a team he never thought he would lead in a million years with Rock finally joining them when it was all done and over, all that is except for one little sniper he took care of along the way. Though it does end on a happy note of a sort, it would have been nice to see Ulysses get some sort of closure, one final mission where he would have been branded a hero or perhaps retired with honour. As it stands, with twenty-six issues of action, suspense, tension and drama, Code Name: Gravedigger and Men of War as a whole was a solid read and is definitely worth the time seeking it out for those that like truly great war comics.

4.5 out of 5

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