A Comic a Day in May – Day 3: Spies.4

Vital Publishing’s Spies series has been one of it’s most consistent in the previous issues (#1, #2 & #3) and getting a look at the 4th was always going to be something I would jump at.

While writer John Farman has already lead us through a spy thriller filled with action and intrigue it eases into its penultimate issue with the swagger of a seasoned pro killing for his country.  Here, however, we have the unravelling of a story that’s ingrained with revenge that only death seems able to appease but with John in the clutches of his enemies there’s still the last roll of the dice to go for with a daring escape plan.

That escape plan in itself has the blend of youth & experience working together to save the day but just as they think they’ve covered all possibilities there’s another challenge around the next corner as their enemies close in on them.  That topsy-turvy life as a spy is one we already know about from previous stories but here the risks all seem a bit more final and with us edging closer to a finale there’s still a chance for shocks that are just a page turn away.

The edgy journey towards events that could go either way is something that John has revelled in from the opening issue and the wave of risk is something that’s swept us along consistently from the beginning.  Not content with that, the character losses along the way hit like the gut-punches they are supposed to and we’re left reeling by each revelation.

Stref returns on art duties and the level of detail combined with the uses of shadow helps keep the spy-world as fully-charged as we’d expect and it all plays it’s part in building tension & risk around those central characters.  John adds the finishing touches with his lettering to tackle the dialogue that’s well-placed on the pages to keep things flowing and direct the story through some pretty slick interactions between the foes involved.  Extra nod to John for another great cover too.

Brutal & relentless in places, this fourth issue keeps the intrigue levels at suitably high level while managing to sustain a pace that helps elevate the risk to the characters to a more tangible level.  The writing & art combo feels like a well-oiled machine working through it’s function and in the end the thrill of the chase is poured into the pages to then be poured into our eyes and imaginations. I don’t want this to end……but I want to see what happens.

You can head over to the Vital Publishing website to check out all their titles and keep up to date with what else they’re working on over on Facebook & Twitter.

8/10

G-Man

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