Writer: Steve Albertson
Artist: Jacob Elijah
Publisher: Image Comics
In the post-apocalyptic ruins of the city of Chi Nova, Keico Loc is a bounty hunter employed by the ruthless E.B.S Agency. But when she thwarts a deadly terrorist attack against the city, Keico finds herself caught up in a power struggle between Chi Nova’s powerful ruling elite and the underground resistance known as the Revlows.
Ahhhh what a glorious time to be a comic book geek. For all the pessimistic banter about the downfall of the industry and steadily declining sales figures, one can’t help but notice that there are a hell of a lot of brilliant individuals producing some incredible comic books these days. With new artists and writers continuing to transform and develop what was once an industry of mere “funny books”, well…let’s just say it’s enough to make a fan boy spray his shorts in glee. Case in point: Ghost Spy, an entertaining new comic that reads like Japanese Anime on acid. Ghost Spy is hyper-violent, fast paced and just plain entertaining. You won’t find pages of brooding inner narratives or panels of silent introspective art. What you will find is an action packed story with decapitations, explosions and all the delightful elements gratuitous violence has to offer. But where Ghost Spy differs from the scores of other gore-splattered titles cluttering the shelves, is that it contains an intricate and well woven story-line, and a protagonist that you can’t help but feel for. Ghost Spy is a comic book that is clearly influenced by manga, and like the very best manga, the excessive violence works only because it is complimented by a well-written story and believable characters. The exploding cyborgs are fun to read, but it’s the exploits and emotions of Keico herself that bring readers back for more.
Issue #3 picks up with Keico in a rare moment of respite and having a heart to heart with Sho Lo (a deadly Revlow assassin who rescued her from the clutches of Chemcom in Issue 2). Sho Lo offers Keico the chance to join the Revlows for a large scale operation they are planning, but Keico refuses. It is here that Keico reveals a bit more about her past and in a brilliant flashback montage we find out that she was once a member of a deadly cult operating out of the fringes of the Forgotten Blocks. Known as “God’s Gun” Keico served the self-professed prophet and psychopath known as Black Eye, carrying out his bidding without question or remorse. The issue is further rounded out when Keico has another chance encounter with Rame and Griggs (the ruthless bounty hunters who first appeared in Issue 1) with Griggs now recovered after Keico put a bullet in his head. Once her former allies, Griggs and Rame now turn on Keico resulting in a major battle on the blood soaked streets of Chi Nova and a badly wounded Keico barely managing to survive the encounter. The issue concludes with Keico desperately trying to figure out what is going on during a frantic phone conversation with her employer Shaw, and eventually finding herself on the bounty hunters list of targets.
Throughout the issue, Jacob Elijah once again proves that he is a major new talent in the industry, with his jaw-dropping art that appears as a kind of surrealistic blend of Japanese anime and street graffiti. The comic is worth picking up for Elijah’s art work alone and is complimented beautifully by Steve Albertson’s solid script work. Ghost Spy #3 is a must have for anyone looking for a change from the usual superhero fare. With its brilliant blend of hyper-violence and well-crafted characters, comic geeks can rest easy, because with brilliant new titles like Ghost Spy on the shelves, the industry is in good hands.
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