Monolith, Llc. 2014
Written by Josh Dahl
Illustrated by Shawn Langely
Coloured by Micah Faulkner
Ambitious super criminal, Coil, assembled a crew of villains to steal an ancient and mysterious crown. Black Flag, the Cut, the young lovers Icicle and Pile-Diver and Claw Hammer escaped underground with the stolen loot, but Coil has one more surprise for them.
I’m thankful for the opportunities given to me that allow me access to small unknown books like this one. I found the story to be very well written and the characterization is extremely good. This issue is a mix of current and flashback’s that allow us to get to know the young woman known as Icicle. This is a different look at a story with the focus on villains and what they go through when betrayed by one of their own. It’s also interesting to note that this world they live in is ready for people with powers but how they handle them well that’s another story entirely.
Icicle and her lover Pile-Driver were ready to take off and roam the world together after this job with Coil paid off. As the crew, sans Coil, make the getaway they discover they’ve been double crossed as Coil has replaced the bag that supposed to hold the crown with explosives that go off.
From the darkness, literal darkness of the tunnel, we see a young girl watching boys building a fort out of snow. Not wearing proper winter wear and looking like a neglected child, underfed and the like, she explores what they’ve built and gets trapped there. That feeling of being trapped is probably what triggered an instinct to coat herself with ice saving her from the explosion. She isn’t the only to survive Claw Hammer manages to live through the explosion as well but getting out of their predicament isn’t going to be easy even with their powers.
The background we get on her really sets the stage for what we see from her today. The feelings of abandonment, inadequacy and fear of enclosed spaces all are demonstrated nicely as we see her grow up. It’s extremely well tied into how she behaves now that she’s in costume and on her own again. All her experiences have forged the woman she’s become and with this latest twist in her life she’s found a new purpose but what happens if she sees it through what then? Sure revenge against the man who betrayed and her killed her lover lights a fire in her and as we continue to see what she’s capable of whom will she be at the end of it all is the real question.
I liked this it’s interesting, well done and the pacing and characterization really hit the reader where it counts, in their minds. You can empathize with her and what’s she gone through that has made her a villain. Very well done Josh very well done indeed.
The interiors are black and white and are also very nicely done. It’s detailed, expressive and full of life, emotions and substance. Shawn demonstrates some really good solid talent here and he really helps draw you into this world.
Head to www.rapidcity.com and find out how you can read this gem of a find.