Monday, January 25, 2010

Comic Review: THE UNKNOWN: THE DEVIL MADE FLESH #4 (Boom! Studios)

Mark Waid once again hits his stride in the final issue of The Unknown: The Devil Made Flesh. The story so far is that Cat Willingham (world’s greatest detective) is dying (literally) to solve the world’s greatest mystery—life and death. She’s discovered the mystery of a rash of serial killings in this small town, and now she, Doyle, and half the town are trapped in a cave. Will she discover the secret of the reincarnated soul and find out the greatest secret of all?

That part I won’t tell you. You’ll have to read for yourself. What I will tell you is that this is an enjoyable read. Waid is a master storyteller. The story is very simple, but suitably so. At its heart it’s a murder mystery, but the supernatural element is reminiscent of a Goon or Hellboy story: some tortured soul wreaking havoc until it can be at peace. Add in Adriana, Cat’s former partner, and her hidden agenda, and you’ve got yourself a fun read. The big reveal halfway through the book ties the story together, back to the first issue, in a very nice way and once again leaves the story totally open for a sequel.

Minck Oosterveer once again serves art duty on this book and does a nice job. My only complaint is that Catherine sometimes looks like she’s about to fall out of her top, which can be a little distracting. I understand the appeal of a sexpot heroine, but there comes a time when you just want to see Cat for the detective she is, not the cleavage she’s flashing. Cover art duty is shared by Erik Jones and Alexander Stojanov.

If you’ve been following this series, you know this is a must buy. If you haven’t, find the back issues and give this series a whirl. Better yet, support indie books and your local comic shop and pick up the 1st series hardcover and the back issues. Trust me, you’ll thank me later.

Written by Mark Waid
Drawn by Minck Oosterveer

Stacey Rader
Senior Reviewer

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