Writer: Robert Kirkman
Artists: Robert Kirkman (layouts), Tony Moore (p & i), Val Staples (colors)
Publisher: Image Comics
The last issue of the series (for now anyway), Battle Pope #14 has the obligatory "Major" development. What it does not have is the final wrap-up knot to tie it all together. Moreover, the aforementioned major development isnít even (directly) about the main character. On the positive side, it stops the Godly butt-whooping he was being handed last issue.
For those who missed the previous issue, it wasnít a very fortunate one for Pope. In it, a peeved off God summoned Pope and confronted the philandering pontiff about certain actions that he committed with Mary. By Mary I mean Jesusí mother. Already heated, it didnít take long before things got physical with God beating Pope all over heaven, literally. The issue ended with Mary stepping in to stop her one-time long-time lover (God) from pummeling the life out of her Yule-time fling (Pope).
That was then, this is now. The issue kicks off with Mary giving a verbal dressing down to God, which given that he is in the nude to start with is, well, ironic. What comes next surprised even Mary when after having apologized and made reparations for his actions, God got down on his knees in front of her. God, did he have a proposal for her, literally. And that is what the rest of the issue is about, the marriage of God to his long time partner/girlfriend/lady Mary, Mother of Jesus. As for the main players of the series, Pope is the priest giving the couple their vows, Tina is the maid of honor, St. Michael the best-man, and Jesus, he uh, heís the flower boy. Anyone not familiar with Battle Pope will read this issue and understand clearly that this version of Jesus isnít anywhere close to the one from Garth Ennisís Chronicles of Wormwood, nevermind his real-life depiction.
The artwork of Battle Pope has been consistently good throughout its run, and this issue is no different. Whether it is in the fights or just normal character interactions or even the funny moments, the duo of Tony Moore and Val Staples handle each scene with equal finesse and detail. Heck, even their cherubs have the trademark Battle Pope mixture of cuteness, humor and religious parody.
Conclusion: This isnít so much so a last issue as it is an abrupt-stop. However, Battle Pope Fans can take comfort with the reveal of the upcoming THE ALL-NEW New Adventures of Battle Pope, possibly early 2008. Hereís hoping that that possibility becomes a reality, one as funny as Battle Pope.
You can find more reviews by Bruce Logan at www.xcave.net
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