Marvel Comics 2020
Written by Howard Mackie
Illustrated by Javier Saltares
Ink Assists by Marc Deering
Coloured by Arif Prianto
Lettered by VC’s Joe Sabino
THE ONE YOU’VE BEEN WAITING FOR – THE RETURN OF VENGEANCE!
MICHAEL BADILINO was a bad dude in life - and that landed him in hell. But not just any old rung of hell, a layer so deep it’s reserved for those special enemies of hell – one where a former SPIRIT OF VENGEANCE may suffer for all eternity! As LILITH’s gambit against JOHNNY BLAZE and MEPHISTO for the throne of hell heats up, you can bet other players will enter the arena - and Badilino will find a way to ride again as VENGEANCE!
I am a fan of Ghost Rider and always have been though I am not really all that sure why heh. He has this convoluted history with multiple folks having taken up the mantle at various points in time. Which actually may be what I like about it because each version of the character brought and brings something different to the table. That Badlino isn’t your typical Rider is definitely a bonus in my book and while Lilith and the others who are involved in this fight for hell Badlino is a wild card of the best kind. The dynamic that is presented here is phenomenal and this makes me want to see more!
I like the way that this is being told. The story & plot development that we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is presented extremely well. How we see this being structured is fantastic and how the story is introduced and developed really keeps pulling the reader in and doesn’t let up for a moment. The character development here is phenomenal and seeing the characters act and react to the situations and circumstances they encounter flesh them out really well. The pacing here is superb and as it takes us through the pages revealing the story and the twists & turns along the way is fantastic. How everything works together to create the story’s ebb & flow is pretty amazing to see. I am really, really enjoying how the events of this book are presented to us and the potential for what is to come is thrilling.
The interiors here are fantastic. I love the linework that we see and the varying weights and techniques that are being utilised to bring out the detail work is stellar. This is some really strong comic book style artwork and it works with everything we see here. This is Hell so I’d like to see more creativity and imagination in the utilisation of backgrounds, while the sweeping lines for action are nice but i wanna see Hell. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show a stupendous eye for storytelling. The colour work is beautifully rendered. How we see the various hues and tones being utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work is sensational. I also like how we see various colours in places you might not expect them but because of a light source it’s completely as it should be. This understanding of how colour works is super impressive.
This is book and character that I would totally read on a monthly basis. It has the drama and the complexity that makes things so much more complicated than you go into this expecting it to be. There is this unexpected depth to the storytelling and it draws the reader in and engages their minds and imaginations in all the right ways. Marvel has some stellar books and none of them involve the Avengers or X-Men and it’s time that these books get to shine.