- Iran mulls ban on vasectomies, decrease on abortions to bolster population
- CNN op-ed claims right-wingers ‘more deadly than jihadists’
- Classes resume at high school rocked by stabbings
- ABC News accuses Center for Public Integrity of stealing Pulitzer-winning work
- Law firm that cleared N.J. Gov. Christie in ‘Bridgegate’ gave 10K to RGA, which he heads
- PETA ‘hopping mad’ at Michelle Obama for using real eggs at Easter Egg Roll
- Sneaky Nebraska toddler traps self inside claw machine game
- Biden to lead $600 million work force training effort
- Atheists’ Easter taunt to Christians: ‘Jesus is a myth’
- Miley Cyrus hospitalized, cancels Kansas City show
Zadzooks: Haunt: Immortal Edition, Book One
In 2009, writer Robert (The Walking Dead) Kirkman and sequential-art legend Todd (Spawn) McFarlane teamed their creative might to produce an oddly familiar but brutal comic book character.
Haunt: Immortal Edition, Book One (Image Comics, $34.99) takes the first 12 issues of the series and wraps a sturdy hard cover around the collection to beautifully preserve the often-gory action.
In Mr. Kirkman’s tale, a Catholic priest named Daniel Kilgore finds himself tethered to the spirit of his dead brother Kurt. The pair team up to manifest, on demand, a being covered in and powered by ectoplasm.
When Daniel finds himself caught up in his sibling’s covert ops work and a research project the Third Reich would appreciate, readers get stuck in an action-packed, outrageously violent world.
That’s not a bad thing, especially for those in love with gushing, bloody fight scenes, entrails aplenty, women serving cheesecake and a twinge of the days when Image Comics began.
The first observations of any veteran comics fan will be the ridiculous similarity between the Haunt’s illustrated design and Mr. McFarlane’s work on Spider-Man in the late 1980s.
The acrobatic hero sports a lithe body, just like Peter Parker, and shoots weblike protoplasmic projectiles often paired with razor-sharp tendrils. He also poses for attack just like our favorite web slinger.
That tribute is kind of fun, but I found Mr. Kirkman’s plot surprisingly average, considering his talent. The conflict that binds the brothers together revolves around a woman, Kurt’s neglected wife who also was Daniel’s past love. Sorry, boring.
In fact, male/female relationships supply a level of soap-opera melodrama throughout — always at their basest sex-dream level.
Now, it was fun to see the gruesome downfall of assassin warrior Cobra (cough, Chapel, cough), the odd and beefy personality of crime lord Mr. Hurg (cough, Kingpin, cough) and sexy agent Mirage (cough, Danger Girl Sydney Savage, cough).
I was settled in for a mildly entertaining effort, and then, midway through the book, something wonderful happened to really suck me in.
Much like Dorothy waking up in Oz, my eyes went from tolerating Ryan Ottley’s mediocre art to loving the final six issues starring illustrator Greg Capullo.
Now, nothing is wrong with Mr. Ottley’s effort, especially if you like John Romita Jr.’s work on Spider-Man.
However, compared to Mr. Capullo’s detail, it’s an eye-shattering experience. His disturbing ability to bring the violence of the Haunt to splash pages and his care with the female facial form makes the book worth the hefty price of admission.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
A graduate of Northwestern University with a degree in communications, Joseph Szadkowski has written about popular culture for The Washington Times for the past 17 years. He covers video games, comic books, new media and technology.
- Zadzooks: Lego The Hobbit review
- Zadzooks: Captain America: The Winter Soldier review (iPad)
- Zadzooks: Winter Soldier and Falcon Minimates review
- Zadzooks: Captain America: The Winter Soldier - Black Widow figure review
- Zadzooks: Infamous: Second Son review
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By returning to Christian roots, the nation can achieve greatness once again
- GOP writes legislation to deny Attorney General Eric Holder his salary
- 'Culture of intimidation' seen in Nevada ranch standoff
- Fuel-filled wings, ability to swarm: Pentagon offers glimpse at future of drone fleet
- Secret U.S. assessments show Afghanistan not ready to govern on own
- CARSON: Recovering Tocqueville's vision of American exceptionalism
- Ga. judge won't stop new Vidalia onion rule
- Atheists rush to stage Easter display: 'Jesus Christ is a myth'
- EDITORIAL: Intolerance at Brandeis silences Muslim dissident Hirsi Ali
- U.S. Navy to turn seawater into jet fuel
- Nevada Bundy ranch standoff could leave dirt on Harry Reid reputation
Celebrity deaths in 2014
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.