Writer: Brian Buccellato / Artist: Toni Infante / Image Comics
After a 6-month hiatus the horror-thriller Sons of the Devil returns to Image Comics and does a great job reeling us back in after such a long break. The format of the series certainly helps – consistent flashbacks plus a slow burn plot whose tension comes from a danger just below the surface but rarely ever seen. Here in issue #11 the danger is shown, the devil who is often spoken of, as a much-needed jolt back to where we left off, because if there was a time to use your turbo boost, this was it.
The issue excels in integrating a “previously on” type of conversation without feeling too forced or contrived, catching the audience up while also walking Travis toward a state of mine that plays into his future decision making. There is never a genuine sense of danger around Travis himself – he definitely has the protagonist-who-can’t-be-harmed-yet shield of invulnerability around him – but the worry comes strong in any scene he’s together with Mel, now pregnant, the woman who offers his character redemption from being ill-tempered and impulsive, the woman who will also likely suffer because of it. Those scenes together are, again, leveraged in this issue to powerful effect as Mel represents the voice of reason that Travis will disregard to their peril.
Overall, Sons of the Devil #11 is a great welcome back to a series long missed. Toni Infante’s artwork remains consistently strong and fitting if not slightly heavy on this dramatic-expression-with-a-red-background-and-speed-lines usage, and illustrates a well-paced, well-laid issue page after page. As the horror element of the series peeks through more clearly we can hope to see it more often, and more gruesomely, as the stakes grow higher.
Reading Sons of the Devil? Find BNP’s other reviews of the series here.