Coming face to face with the worst version of yourself has gotta suck. For one, you can’t help but see similarities and hope that the glaring differences are what make you objectively better. For another, well, in the case of ensouled vampire vs. evil self, you’re probably going to have to kill the other version, which may require some therapy of sorts afterwards. With Spike’s soul on the line because of a Faustian bargain, the gang has to unite to take down one Dr. Dead. Except, ya know, there’s still the whole matter with Angelus...
In the penultimate episode to this arc, Christopher Cantwell truly shows off his ability to combine wild action with excellent comedic timing. A couple of the gags here have the feel of the occasional silliness that we saw on the TV show, but there’s a certain specificity to Cantwell’s humor that truly does seem to be his own imprint on the franchise.
I’m particularly happy that this series has kept the team of Daniel Bayliss, Patricio Delpeche, and María Agustina Vallejo together on art duties. Bayliss’ art is great as usual, presenting us with a highly stylized look that does exude LA cool. The character work is wonderful, and the action sequences really crackle. Delpeche and Vallejo’s colorwork in this issue is some of the strongest work I’ve seen from them in this series so far. I'm particularly drawn to the light and shadow play in this issue. Becca Carey’s lettering keeps the script flowing smoothly and while I miss the squelchy sound effects from the previous issue, there are other pretty good ones in here, too.
Overall, things have gotten about as messy as they get, and I’m looking forward to seeing how this creative team takes the gang to the end.
Creative Team: Christopher Cantwell (writer), Daniel Bayliss (artist), Patricio Delpeche and María Agustina Vallejo (colorists), Becca Carey (letterer)
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
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