Spirits of Vengeance #2
Marvel Comics 2017
Written by Victor Gischler
Illustrated by David Baldeon
Coloured by Andres Mossa
Lettered by VC’s Cory Petit
After being handed a silver bullet by a dying angel, Johnny Blaze (A.K.A. Ghost Rider) turned to Daimon Hellstrom for answers. Unbeknownst to them, the silver bullet was property of a human sorcerer named Necrodamus, who is desperate to get the enchanted metal back. His lieutenant, Razan the Night Jackal, was entrusted to retrieve the silver and prevent knowledge of their existence from spreading by any means necessary….
Meanwhile, Hellstrom’s contacts in the supernatural underworld confirmed his worst fears; something much bigger is afoot and it could mean the end of everything. With the stakes impossibly high and time running short, Daimon called for backup: the vampire hunter known as Blade!
Despite my best intentions I’m actually really enjoying this. The way Victor is building up the suspense and bringing us into this story is extremely well done. It’s also a perfect example that Marvel doesn’t trust products outside certain teams as this should be an ongoing monthly series. By keeping this around, promoting it and giving fans a chance to find it, get behind it and see the work being done here could make this a huge success. Their decision to give it only five issues is why many of us don’t feel loyalty to Marvel any more because we don’t feel they are loyal to us, their market.
This suave and debonair Daimon is utterly delightful with his suit that has hints of his colourful costume. This more serious and studious incarnation of him is a huge attractor to me. This issue opens with the group visiting one of Damion’s contacts which just happens to be an antique book-store that he frequently uses to get his research. While I’m somewhat taken aback that the proprietor of this establishment wouldn’t recognise that Johnny isn’t there alone and still tries to proceed in procuring that which he is reported to have well it’s certainly eye-catching and allows us to see the trio in action together for the first time.
I rather enjoy the use of dialogue here. Not only does it give us great insight into the characterisation but it’s just extremely enjoyable. There’s humour infused with impatience and annoyance that just balances itself out. Victor also continues to use that throughout the entire issue regardless of the characters involved. It is one his strongest uses for me and it does lot in terms of motivation and commitment to what’s happening. He’s really doing this super strong, solid book that has imagination, familiarity and encompasses the whole heaven and hell aspect going on. Though ironically enough I don’t believe Marvel actually has characters from Heaven’s army in it’s ranks. Gods galore but none from Christianity.
David’s eye for storytelling through the use of angles and perspective is very nice to see. His attention to detail in the backgrounds is tight, well done and has this whole wonderful feel to them, the characters then turn into cartoonish caricatures. I wish that the creativity in seeing the demons here was on display more they need to be more detailed and fearsome rather than seeming to be so simplistic. Andres colours do enhance a lot of the simpler aspects here and provide a wonderful sense of movement. The book they are looking through that’s the level of detail we need throughout the book in my humble opinion.
I like how we see various players being taken off the field and one more being added to it. Satana’s entrance is both dramatic and sexy without being tasteless and that alone is worth it’s weight in gold. By the same token the ending here the demon meeting “A third-rate sorcerer” well that’s just as powerful, and note to David those images on the final panel should’ve had that effect in the book-store.
This NEEDS to be a Marvel mainstay to give the supernatural aspect of Marvel a place to thrive!