Hermes Press 2015
Written by Peter David
Illustrated by Sal Velluto
Coloured by Eugenio Mattozzi
This continues to be one of the best Phantom stories around right now. Peter is weaving so much into this story with the Phantom’s history, his love life and mythology and he’s got Sal right there with him illustrating the heck out of it! When we left off they were in pursuit of the Singh Pirates when the Phantom makes a desperate attempt to save them all from an aerial ambush.
How many times has Kit gone and done something dangerous only to survive and come to Diana? This is no different but I love seeing the fear and panic in her when he does something like this. That’s the heart of a love that doesn’t die. God I wish Peter and Sal will continue to collaborate on future limited series featuring the Phantom for Hermes. I’ve been an on again off again reader of the Phantom for years because it always seems to kind of be the same but these guys make it really stand out.
How does the Phantom who doesn’t fly stop an aerial attack? Yeah bravery and courage and not mention a lot of skill over his own body but to see it in action you have to read the story. Suffice it to say however it’s extremely impressive and folks the Bat have nothing on him! There really is something timeless about the Phantom, maybe it’s his actions or that his suit doesn’t really change but regardless of the pirates or technology he is just a classic.
That we still see what happens to Diana and the rest of them and see them on the right trail well that’s just good pacing, storytelling and knowing when and where these breaks belong or fit into a story. I have to say seeing Baroness as a good guy per se well it is interesting and does open up a lot of potential. Plus Jimmy having a very similar origin to Kit’s well I wouldn’t the boys tackling a spin-off limited series to get know him better.
When the Phantom is traipsing through the jungle with Jamal I have to say what was said had a very profound effect. Not really subtle but unexpected and matter of factly stated by Jamal it really kind gives you pause for a moment. That’s another thing I love about Peter’s writing there is so much depth and layering to it. It’s also towards the end of this journey that they encounter some locals.
There’s a fight page and well it’s very much in my eyes reminiscent to old Mike Grell work it’s detail and expression, big compliment Sal, from reading Jon Sable. Sal’s layout and transitioning and just the two combatants is one of those rare pages that tell more than what you originally think. In an series full of stop and wow moments from him that this one stands out even more is just that much more incredible to me.
This really is hands down the BEST Phantom story i’ve read in years! Strong story, characterization and stunning interiors make this a book that you’ll sit up and take notice of.