REVIEW: Death Sentence – London #3

Story: Montynero
Art: Martin Simmonds
Letters: Comicraft’s Jimmy Betancourt
Colors: Martin Simmonds
Publisher: Titan Comics
Release Date: August 12, 2015

Earlier this year I had the privilege of interviewing Montynero, creator of Death Sentence:London, and he answered some of the Comic Crusaders’ questions about the direction of the book, his creative process and expounded on the series’ light-manipulating star, Verity Fette. Well, Ms. Fette takes center-stage in issue number three of the new on-going book, and we see just how much of a trainwreck her life has become.

The issue starts off a little slowly, so slowly in fact that I got the impression that Montynero may have dialed this one in as a filler book. The opening scenes have Mulgrew accepting a re-assignment and new commanding officer all in a perfectly Hollywood-style interpretation of how something like that happens; he’s examined alone, in a huge cathedral of a mission prep room, replete with holographic displays and anonymous “white coats” scurrying about.

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Like I said, the formulaic presentation threw me off for a bit and I seriously thought this may have been the series’ first major departure from the fresh pace and authentic vibe of previous issues.

Things pick up as the focus of the story switches from Mulgrew to Fette and the aftermath of a drunken tryst. It’s scenes like these that make Death Sentence such a great title to read and have kept me around for the duration. The scene foreshadows much of the rest of the issue where we learn, through admittedly one-sided phone conversations and angry emails, that Verity has tried to reconnect with a number of her exes. This, of course, has not gone how she planned, but ‘Nero presents this in such a way that as we learn about Verity, she learns about herself. Just a bit of philosophical introspection, because you know, even if the world if crumbling ’round you, “The unexamined life is not worth living.”

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These moments of self-reflection and self-realization in the midst of entirely human, everyday situations, situations which are themselves set against a backdrop of absurdity, are what make the book. These people are, well…people, and though they populate a world where impossible is literally only a word, they still remain fundamentally human.

While I can’t say that this is the best issue I’ve ever read, it does hold up well with the rest of the series (if you can muscle through those first few pages).

By: A.C.

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