We’re nine issues into the first original comic book series written and created by Clive Barker and things are starting to heat up; thought the question remains… is it good?
Clive Barker’s Next Testament #9 (BOOM! Studios)
Last issue was a bit of a wash, with the main feature being a 1000+ person orgy taking place below the Eiffel Tower. The issue felt largely like filler because there wasn’t much of a point to things. (Though maybe record-setting sized orgies beneath the Eiffel Tower are the point.) There was little to no social commentary, which has been one of the strongest aspects of this series, but it also started to get stale. Wick, AKA God, is travelling around killing and maiming and toying with humanity and we still don’t know why. The heroes haven’t figured out a solution yet either making it all very pointless and annoying to read. This issue seems to be nearing an answer in that department though, which hopefully puts this series back on track.
Seriously what are we doing here?
For all intents and purposes I think writers Clive Barker, Mark Miller have a hell of a comic series on their hands here. The only problem is that it’s had some bad decompression going on. There are plenty of interesting aspects, but so many pages have felt like filler and/or the art hasn’t told enough story per page.
In this issue Wick’s compatriot and father to the protagonist finally speaks up; the protagonist is one step from a possible solution and Wick finally just says “Screw this kill all the humans” which we knew was coming too. There’s still a bit of a tease going on with Wick and the protagonists’ actions, but it’s progress none the less. We also get some more sociopathic moments on display from Wick which are delectably unnerving and there’s some clever exposition delivered that makes you think.
Note how creepy innocent Wick looks here.
The art by Haemi Jang continues to be dark and disturbingly creepy. The darkness is everywhere, as if Wick himself is everywhere, yet he’s sprayed in colors. He also kills it on facial expressions, especially for Wick. There are times he looks child like and yet a page later he’s snarling like a wild beast. It goes a long way in showing how twisted Wick is and how unpredictable he is at the same time.
Is It Good?
The series is back on track from a slow issue #8. The scary is very real as always, but now there’s some good progression of story we can all sink our teeth into.