In the last issue Merrick’s quest for revenge brought him face to face with Ferrari and this soon spills over into a man vs elephantman show down but the animals & friends in the cages surrounding them are soon used as a distraction to aid his escape.
Satisfying his revenge was so close to Merrick’s grasp that it feels like a real body blow that he didn’t get a chance to fully take care of Ferrari……and in the mafia way. Although saving the friends and animals he knew from the Circus he used to call his home is some consolation to him but it’s only now that we see the level of manipulation his “friend” Treves has been forcing on him. The dark cult that he’s part of have been heavily involved in assessing Merrick’s limits and how they can use him for their own gains and this is what we’ve been building up to…..a big game to torment Merrick and gain his trust. The issue and first arc closes out with another visit to the book store and the introduction of a 3rd party trying to find the book that’s now in the hands of Treves & his cult friends.
Luke maintains the consistency and quality in the artwork and yet again captures the electricity of those moments of action and the somber moments of a tortured soul impressively well. I’ve made the comparison before with the likes of Hellboy & the BPRD but that’s purely as an indication of the level of quality the art and everything else in this book is currently at. The lettering from Nic J. Shaw does just as much to add to the tension & tears across the pages and this unique title is a great escape from a sea of superhero titles.
A glorious conclusion to this first run from the creative team as we’ve seen a brand new world built character by character into something that you’d expect from the likes of Dark Horse, Image or any other publisher lucky to sign these guys up. While I’m slightly disappointed that Merrick didn’t get his revenge on Ferrari….I’m pleased to say I’ll be sticking with this for the long haul and I hope beyond hope that the consistent quality they’ve poured into these first 4 issues will continue. Something I have every faith in.