Comic Book Review: Shadowman #11
Shadowman #10 was the issue that everyone was waiting for, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. It has been some times since Jack has been able to face someone so formidable, and Sandria was the perfect obstacle to throw his way. After everything we saw from his anscestor’s past? Seeing her under these circumstances lived up to expectation as time was not kind to this necromancer. The only question is what it will take to put this battle to rest.
As the final showdown, one may have assumed a lot of things about what this could have in store for us. Not only does Shadowman #11 serve as a conclusion to this confrontation with Sandria Darque, it serves as a conclusion to this story arc . Meaning that there’s a lot to wrap up here. What I loved about this issue is that it ended up being the full package in satisfying the overall conflict that Jack and Alyssa have been fighting. If you were someone who expected a full-blown battle between Shadowman and Sandria to take up the majority of this issue, then you would be let down because that isn’t the kind of book this serves as. This creative team gives us so much to invest in for the fact that there is a balance to the action and plot progression. So when that first fight with Sandria came to an end, I walked away from that more excited that Jack is now capable of so much more being unbound to the Shadow Loa.
In general, they wasted no moment in this issue taking opportunities to show where Jack is now different from what he could do before. In the case of Jack Boniface? Knowledge is as much power as anything else. This allowed him the ability to do so much, and with much more confidence. This side to him is a development you can get behind, the same way we were thrilled with the badass warrior that Alyssa was able to turn herself into on her own.Discovery, self-discovery, it all went hand in hand here. I only felt that we were led incorrectly to believe that there would be any trouble brewed between Jack and the Shadow Loa. It was actually for the best that there wasn’t any drama stirred during such a crucial point. I mean, what sense would it really make to fight back against the guy who has freed you and is keeping you from being bound again?
Where the Brethren were involved, I found everything about the writing for them to be clever. As normal people, their approach to getting what they want requires some thinking outside the box. Direct, indirect, their actions demanded them taking advantage of what could easily be overlooked. What they represented by the end of this issue was the appeal in a story where you expect the unexpected. Not everything was as it seemed with them, with this new Shadowman, or what we thought we were anticipating with this last stretch of the story arc.
I was a bit surprised to see that there was two different artists onboard with this issue. It always tends to worry me because Renato Guedes does an excellent job on his own. It was great to see that Eric Battle and Ulises Arreola were handling a part of the story that didn’t distract you with two distinct styles. I actually appreciated the work that they put into their side of the story since they pulled off an impressive scene that involved capturing a lot of Djinns and demons in one place. It takes a lot of patience to have that much going on at the same time. Not to mention having so many demons running around in one page or panel without sacrificing quality for quantity. With that said, Renato’s work was stunning for what he was able to capture within this last stretch of the story arc. It was exciting to see all the new tricks that Jack has now added to his arsenal. Even more to see the kind of chaos he could unleash with a command over the supernatural that he has never had before. The bloodbath that turned into was everything gory that I do believe Renato held back on. Nothing over the top, but just what you would expect from some terrifying demon creations unleashed onto these pages.
Shadowman #11 was worth the wait as the story which has changed Shadowman’s fate forever. This creative team gave us everything we wanted and more when anticipating the return to form for this hero. There was adventure, discovery, exploration, and so much more when Jack and Alyssa gave us a dynamic that is so far memorable for the Valiant Universe. What I appreciated most about this run is that we got more than four issues. There was so much to address about this character that there was no way that we could only get another mini. Valiant treated us for our patience and these eleven issues were more than enough to satisfy your supernatural needs.