Monday, 25 June 2018

The Immortal Men #3 - DC Comics

THE IMMORTAL MEN No. 3, August 2018
Many of this publication’s audience probably strongly related to Caden Park’s predicament when he awakes at the start of this comic from what the teenager clearly hoped had been a fevered nightmare in which he’d seen his murdered parents transformed into multi-fanged bestial killers. For whilst James Tynion IV’s script undeniably contains plenty of exposition concerning its plethora of cast members, most notably a condensed origin of Ghost Fist and an intriguing indication as to the complex relationship between former friends Reload and the Hunt, it also disconcertingly contains very little in the way of action, plot progression or escape…

Indeed, arguably all this twenty-page periodical provided its readers in June 2018 was a seemingly endless series of dialogue-heavy diatribes, which whilst occasionally interesting, such as Roderick Clay’s miraculous transportation into the near future, increasingly gets ‘bogged down’ with weighty word balloon after cram-packed text box. Frustratingly, to make matters worse for the optics though, a large portion of these conversations don’t even use the same font or colour scheme, and doubtless caused any perusing bibliophile to painfully squint at the ghastly red on black background speeches of The Batman Who Laughs or the Infinite Woman’s merging mix of orange upon orange...

Even Patrick Kowalski’s incarceration within the Siege holding cell suffers as a result of Carlos M. Mangual’s diabolical lettering, and scimitar-wielding gaoler’s purple-pigmented stylised font. True, it’s easy to understand the basic message behind the scene considering that their ‘flashback’ to soldiering in Vietnam shoulder-to-shoulder appears so very similar to the history behind “Marvel Worldwide” characters Wolverine and Sabretooth. But even so, it still takes something of a patient eye to slowly wade through all of its lengthy discourse; “If we don’t stoke the fire of the Eternal War now, they won’t be able to fight when it counts. Saving the World is no longer a future endeavour. It must happen now.”

Unfortunately, little solace can debatably be taken from the pencilling on show within Issue Three of “The Immortal Men”, despite Ryan Benjamin clearly trying to adopt every storyboarding trick in the book to try and liven up its sedentary-paced narrative. Irregular-size panels, single splashes, letter-box sequences and double-page layouts are all utilised by the American artist in an effort to imbue this title’s figures with some dynamism, yet nothing can seemingly save Tynion IV’s lack-lustre “Bloodless” penmanship.

‘First published on the "Dawn of Comics" website.'
Storytellers: Ryan Benjamin & James Tynion IV, and Inker: Richard Friend

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