In The Run Through, we’ll be looking at completed comic book series, one volume, one week at a time, from the critically acclaimed to the virtually unknown. The goal is to provide our readers with something new to bite into. This isn’t a review, it’s barely a recommendation. It’s an informal glance at comics that made it to their final issue, and we want to read the stories arc by arc, as they were ultimately intended to be consumed. While there may be minor spoilers, any major developments will be vaguely referred to, so don't worry. No stars, no bashing, just what we did and didn’t like. And yes, we want to hear from you too.
Last time Jackson Winters had a job, it was to steal a ghost. I haven't tried it, and I don't know if you have, but considering the whole lack of physical form, penchant for wrapping up unfinished business, and statistics skewed towards an affinity for murder as opposed to sing-alongs with Casper, I'd say you need to be advanced/proficient in the art of thievery. So his new job, rescuing the daughter of a powerful Native American casino owner (same casino he robbed before the story began), seems like a pretty sweet gig. Except, yeah, she's a little possessed. What the hell, right? Ghosted: Books of the Dead, by Joshua Williamson, Davide Gianfelice, and Miroslav Mrva send Jackson and Trick to Mexico, for horchata, tacos de carne asada, y unos bimbunuelos que hizo tu abuelita para el cumpleaños de tu primo Chencho. I think.
The art change is a definite departure from that of Haunted Heist. Where the first volume had a sketchier, more realistic vibe, this arc has a cartoony feel. As much as I enjoyed Sudzuka's work, I actually prefer this, if only to allow Miroslav Mrva to play with colors. Many scenes offer a monochromatic tone, which does wonders for scene shifting. A monochromatic background also makes characters and movement in the foreground pop, when done with Miroslav Mrva's hand. The fluidity of this volume's drawing, the movement, the action, was all done fantastically by Davide Gianfelice. Actually, the action scenes may have been the best part of this comic.
Having only finished the second volume, I can't say for certain if I like or don't like this story. I can say that the premise is fun, I love the art direction, and I love the idea of Jackson being haunted. So far, I haven't received much in the way of character growth which, to me, is vital. There's new information in this volume about Jackson's casino job, and specifically one woman involved in it, but he's simply been thrown around for these past two volumes and I really have no idea where it's going. The death of a character also felt unnecessary, but again, it's hard for me to say since I haven't seen the repercussions. The character could come back as a ghost, though, and that could be really entertaining.
But, the story is fun. Like most action movies, you don't stay for the commentary on the transcendental nature of man and whether it applies to the new uprising of artificial intelligence. You stay for a shootout, and to watch a ghost go Old Boy on a room of non-believes. In this, Joshua Williamson handles the set ups extremely well, and Davide Gianfelice backs us into corners of anxiety. I'm especially interested in how Anderson, the mercenary-turned-ghost, will change things for Jackson in the next two volumes.
Sorry for the late post again, y'all. I literally had to fight off a swarm of dragons the other day, so needless to say, my house is a mess. The finale of Sweet Tooth will be out soon, followed by Ghosted: Death Wish. See ya soon!
Fermin Gonzalez is currently recovering from battle. Call him out on his bullshit on Twitter @koky_sorta