writer: Jonathan Hickman / artist: Nick Dragotta / Image Comics
What did I just witness? Basically perfection. What an issue. After a couple of slower, table-setter issues, not only did we get an issue heavy on action, we got the arthouse, silent film version of what could be an incredible 15 minute action sequence in a cinematic film. This review will be short because it’s impossible to go into detail without spoiling the issue, but the approach of minimal dialogue or text was very welcome to help jump start this story again. There is an assassination attempt on one of the world leaders, a covert action. It has a result, then we see who was behind the attack. I’m sorry folks, that’s all I got. You’re gonna have to pick this one up. Trust me, it’s worth it.
What I can say, is that if you have been a Nick Dragotta fan (and how the hell could you not be) then this is the drum solo you’ve been waiting for. With the lack of dialogue (on a Hickman book no less!), you can put whatever soundtrack you need to these gorgeous and flowing panels. “Killing Me Softly” works for me. Regardless, him and Frank Martin on the colors do some of their best work to date and it’s a master class in storytelling through images.
You don’t expect a Hickman written story to possess a minimalist approach, but this issue couldn’t have come at a better time. This is war and we got the riskiest venture in that war so far with this issue. We don’t know how it will affect the world of East of West, but it is an absolutely joy for the reader this month.