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Pest Control #7

Posted: Monday, April 25, 2005
By: Kelvin Green



Writer/artist: Grant Springford

Publisher: Ominous Comics
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Sebastian Dead is a mix of Doc Savage and Nick Fury that wouldn't be out of place on 60s British television. He's also Pest Control's best character, and since this issue features him in a prominent role, I'm very tempted to call it the best issue of the series so far.

Even if it weren't for the fantastic Mr. Dead, there's lots to enjoy here. The Grant Morrison-esque weirdness takes a back seat to some Grant Morrison-esque characterisation, and we get some wonderful moments between fan-favourite Penny Dreadful and conceptual hero 10. The scripting here is superb, as is the art, and the characters come across as real and likable, despite the fact that one is a murderous lunatic that possesses people and the other is a weird conceptual oddity. Ironically, it's The Link, the character who emerged immediately as "this title's Wolverine" who comes across worse this issue. That's not to say that there's anything bad here, just that his one tiny scene pales in comparison to the rest of the comic. It's fast approaching the point where I have a different favourite character each issue, which is truly a sign of a writer in his element on a team book.

Springford's art has always been strong, but he consistently shows improvement, and there are some great images in here. He's proving more and more adept at visual characterisation too, with the dialogue scenes working very well indeed, especially the aforementioned Penny/10 exchanges. Character designs are also a strong point, and I particularly enjoyed Penny's Dr. Who-like assumption of a new costume to go with her new body. That she looks cute and adorable in the outfit is of course just a bonus. The Ominous Comics boundaries have up until now been quite rigid; Pest Control does the weird stuff, and Martin Eden's The O Men does the strong characterisation. There's been some dancing over the border from both sides, but this issue of Pest Control counts as a full-on Poland 1939 invasion into Eden's territory, which surely means that some kind of retaliation is imminent. What this means, of course, is that Eden and Springford each have someone to compete with, and what it leads to is excellent comics like this one. This really does top most of what the big publishers are putting out, and you really owe it to yourself to have a look.



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