One of the creepiest comics I’ve ever read gets a final issue this week and I couldn’t be more conflicted. I want more Jenny Finn, but I also want answers! Mike Mignola and Troy Nixey aim to deliver.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
Jenny has been captured and the terrible plague is coming to an end, but when Joe has the chance to escape London, a ghost from his past forces him to stay and finish what he started.
Why does this matter?
Barnacles and little fishes protrude from faces. The setting is old world England and very strange things are afoot. Someone seriously needs to get Tim Burton on this book so we can get a live action film!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Must have been awful to live in the olden days.
If you were annoyed with the slowness of previous issues, or the lack of heroism from the protagonist Joe, fear not because the pace and heroism gets kicked up a notch in this issue. This issue seems to ditch the horror vibe of the previous and go straight into a espionage action adventure. Joe, who was once more a lumbering sad man is now taking charge and rushing to save the now trapped Jenny Finn. Why she’s trapped and what is going on exactly is never explained, but a resolution occurs. The fact that a giant tentacles beast is involved in said resolution is icing on the cake.
The art is good (though completely different) capturing the weirdness of the prime minister character and the gross beastie near the end. A highlight is a scene with Joe barging in on some rich folks partying. On their heads they wear strange hands that are goofy, but also sort of unnerving. “Who are these weirdos?” you’ll be asking yourself.
It can’t be perfect can it?
Farel Dalrymple takes over for Troy Nixey on art and it’s a huge shift in style. Some of the visual motifs are still there, but it’s a huge let down to see the visuals change so much. No disrespect to Dalrymple, but the moody nature of the comic dissipates here and the style is somewhat simplistic when held up to Nixey’s work.
The plotting is also way off from the standard the first three issues established. Past issues were slow and methodical, but this issue seems to be racing to finish things up. Another issue or two could have easily been added to continue that trend. Instead the atmospheric horror show that is this series has turned into an action series. That requires some unearned plot developments to occur in order to wrap things up. Given the little development the villains have been given I was left with questions that got no answers. Again, it seems like there is a lot more to this story than we’ve been shown and instead of fleshing things out it simply rushes to the finish.
Is It Good?
Sometimes a resolution can come too quickly especially when the pace was a slow and methodical one. This issue certainly wraps things up, but does so by changing everything from the art to the genre. If you were in love with the horror vibes of the previous issues you’ll be sorely mistaken to discover the series ends in a schizophrenic way.