Current Reviews


Black Panther #56

Posted: Friday, April 4, 2003
By: Jason Cornwell

Writer: Christopher Priest
Artists: Jim Calafiore (p), Mark McKenna (i)

Publisher: Marvel Comics

As all the various players comes crashing together, we see Kasper Cole attempts to hold true to his ideals, while at the same time protect his family from the impending storm. To this end we see him fashion a plan that gives new meaning to the term reckless.

A real danger of having so many plots in the air at once is that when the big finish does roll around, there tends to be some ideas that don't quite receive the closure they needed to have. Now the big plan that Kasper Cole sets in motion does deal with the main situation with the corrupt NYPD lieutenant, Sal Anthony, and for the most part Kasper has managed to extract himself from most of the trouble he got himself entangled within. I also have to credit the book for managing to deliver a way out for Kasper that successfully ties off more loose ends than I had expected it to. There's also a degree of stupidity & recklessness to his plan that continues to play up the main difference between Kasper & T'Challa, and one has to love the brief moments of interaction these two characters share in this issue.

One is also left wondering how much of an influence did T'Challa have over this whole affair, as while the death of a certain character would seem to toss out the idea that this was a test that T'Challa was putting Kasper through, but we do get signs that T'Challa was playing a larger role than he initially seemed to be. As for the art, there's some lovely action shots in this issue, from the laser sights cutting through Kasper's car, to the final chase sequence, and its rather dramatic finish.

Final Word:
I do think that the book did heap a little too much on its plate, as while we do get some closure, there are several ideas that look to be only partially resolved, and this left me a bit disillusioned, as the one thing Christopher Priest's plots can be counted upon is their ability to tie everything up in a nice, tidy package. Now since this book does seem to be holding its own on the sales chart, I expect we'll be getting some answers after the brief flashback arc by another creative team, and if not then I'll go looking for answers in the upcoming title the "Crew". Still even with the dangling plot threads, this issue does a pretty fair job of tying up its major ideas, as while his plan is reckless & fraught with unnecessary danger, I found Kasper plan to be rather innovative, and the way things play out is fairly clever. It's also nice to see T'Challa is moving back into the spotlight, as I have missed his presence in these pages.

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