Skybound/Image Comics 2013
Written by Joshua Williamson
Illustrated by Vladimir Krstic Laci
Coloured by Miroslav MRVA
Well this series continues to be one the better on the market today. Jackson’s past where we see him buried alive and then seeking revenge why is this happening now and what impact it has on the main story is finally revealed.
Markus really is a madman and the characterization Joshua gives us here is exceptional as always in showcasing how Jackson Winters gets under skin also shows us once again that you really can’t keep a good man down. Still I kind of like Markus’ ranting when he claims death fell in love with Jackson and you see he’s jealous since he sees him as the man he’s always wanted to be and never will. Oh but his rantings and then promises to Nina are stark contradiction to one another and he can’t even realize it he’s like a rabid dog he just spews stuff without realizing what he’s saying.
Also all the work he’s done and spells he’s cast on himself to “steal” deaths powers have taken a toll on him thanks to Vladimir and Miroslav. Actually they’ve been putting out some of the most incredible work throughout their run here and this no different. With all the characters in Death’s realm the work they are doing here really has that hauntingly beautiful quality to it where you can imagine something horrific waiting around every swirl of mist.
Meanwhile the Maestro has Rusnak and King being held captive while the others go to Death’s alter. Ah the Maestro is one of the creepier characters to have been introduced to us with his ancient Chinese visage of teeth and nails evoking all kinds of horror movie thoughts but his actions as as Markus’ lackey are going to be his undoing. Oh and it’s a glorious end too, i’m kind of surprised to at how many of the characters are meeting their sticky end here. While this kind of story is going to amass high body counts over time what is happening this issue makes me wonder what the next step could possibly be?
I’ve always thought this was Jackson’s story but perhaps i’m wrong could it be he’s simply the catalyst for how this series begins and where it moves forward from this point? He’s managed to do something he never thought he could find friends and people who believe in him and share the desire to do what he does. A legacy perhaps of people whose lives he’s touched working together to carry on his work? Joshua is the only who knows for sure but we have to get through this story first because we still need to learn if Markus will be able to steal from Death.
It’s fun to think that absolutely no character is safe. In this world they live in with what they do and come up against a long life is not really in the cards and the fact that Joshua can get so invested in their lives and leave you with an emotional attachment only to have that taken away and still get you to come back repeatedly is a testament to his skills as a storyteller.
I’ve a feeling this is only the beginning and I can’t wait to see what’s still in store.