Written by Pat Shand
Illustrated by Luca Claretti
Coloured by Grostieta
Wulf returns to Arcane Acre, following the monster that destroyed his new school and mortally wounded Natalie. Meanwhile, Violet -- now fully possessed by the Mad Hatter spirits -- unleashes something else upon the school: the Convergence. Violet uses her power to remove the adults from the school grounds, leaving the students at the mercy of the All-Modor and whatever power lies within the Convergence.
Pat takes us back to the school where we pick up where the last story arc ended with Violet having succumbed to the madness that is the mantle of the Mad Hatter and delivers something almost akin to Avengers Academy.
Before we get to the kids though we have a nice look at the adults and that Sela was afraid this was going to happen. We learn that Sela didn’t want Violet among the other kids but then again her own daughter is under suspect as anyone else among these children. They were brought together to be trained and have an eye kept on them. This is another instance where I don’t like Sela as she’s ready to deprive Callie of helping Violet yet her own daughter has the same violent tendencies is automatically helped.
I like how the adults have this whole thing figured out but instead by putting the kids together letting them form a bond they’ve insured they have a built in support system that will help each of them fight those outside forces trying to use them. We see that here and it’s portrayed wonderfully as they stand up to Violet rescue each other and do whatever they can to help.
What I find extremely interesting though is that while Violet’s power is out of control it comes to the attention of the Furies who alert the Dark Lord that it can be used, manipulated for his purposes. Suddenly Cindy, poor crazy blood thirsty Cincy, is all a twitter at the prospect of jumping into action. This firmly ties what’s happening in Pennsylvania to the world at large and the ongoing struggle between the forces of good and evil.
This issue for me is the turning point where the mantle has officially passed on to these kids and who they are and what they can do. They’ve banded together formed a real honest to goodness team and something of a family as well. Pat manages to showcase all this perfectly that while they will need guidance and training they are the next generation and they are here and they are now. That they care about their friend and do whatever they can without killing speaks volumes about their characters.
So the real question is going to be who survived this encounter and who is left to fight off the Dark Lord, Cindy and their hordes waiting outside with the remaining adults.
This is a prime example of the “new” Zenescope powerfully strong storytelling with layered dimensions to it that showcase characters and characterization keeping this world alive and moving forward. Not to mention Luca and Grostieta’s work on the interiors which are just as alive and vibrant as the storytelling. The backgrounds the mood and emotions that come off the page are done expertly.
There’s never been a better time to be a fan of Zenescope than right now!