After a more than impressive beginning in issues #1 & #2 of Merrick : The Sensational Elephantman the chance to get my hands on an early copy of the next issue had me scrambling for that download button.
The penultimate issue in this run from writer Tom Ward & Artist Luke Parker continues Joseph Merrick’s quest for revenge and after building up his tale….he’s still firmly under the care & control of Dr Treves. While I scream at the pages for Joseph to catch-on to what the Doc is up to the tale twists & turns and the daily struggles for acceptance leads to him lashing out in frustration bringing out the worst in them both.
The one silver-lining for Joseph is the revelation of where he can find Carlo Ferrari – his nemesis and the target for the revenge that’s burning inside him. Although that seems to be helping him …..it’s all tied into the manipulation he finds himself on the opposite end of. Watching from the shadows are the Cult members that Treves surrounds himself with and his own quest to be accepted into the higher ranks seems to be the real driving force behind him trying to get as much out of Joseph as he can.
Those first two issues built the background and from here on out Tom Ward ups the pace as the quest for revenge sees Joseph take on the gang surrounding Ferrari. He discovers his friends from the circus still trapped under Ferrari’s control and the issue closes out with a face to face confrontation between them both. Tom handles the balance of characters well as Joseph’s naive, single-mindedness and Dr Treves’ sly, underhanded deceit trade the spotlight while Luke Parker maintains the high quality consistency that we’ve seen in those earlier issues.
Merrick has built to become one of those titles that ooze a unique style and with the combo of talent in the creative team it nestles itself firmly in my reading list. In fact, it’s one of those rare titles I can re-read and still feel the same thing at the same point as I did first time around…….quality that lasts in comic book form……and that’s a win-win thanks to both writing & art. Roll-on issue #4!