For those who missed the first issues of this new series from Comic Experience, here is a quick recap:-
Jack is the reincarnation of a benevolent monk called Tsechang, who trained his order to seek out suffering spirits and release them to their due afterlife. Now Jack and her master Dorje find themselves in Oregon at a strip club called The Bush, where there is a spirit in need and the collection of a long-lost dagger brings with it vicious hunters who have been looking for the dagger, since the murdered Tsechang had managed to cast it adrift in the spirt world.
Looking at this second issue, there appears to be a slight sophomore slump. The first issue, with its clear boundaries had better structure, with the crazy spirit elements only starting to seep out toward the end. From page one of this issue, however it goes spirit world crazy. Writer Chris Lewis may have a long plan for the overall story, but are all the twists and turns really necessary, or are they an attempt to over complicate a very basic story? Dialogue wise, with so much going on, there are some fun interactions, mainly between the big bad and his gang, with Jack’s voice becoming more than a little whiney as secrets of her past life come tumbling out.
Tony Gregori provides the art, with a chaotic style, which is certainly one way to go when laying out the spirit world and the spirits that live within the characters. However, with all the noise and color providing its own distraction, I am left with something akin to a visual headache. Panel structure adds to the overall zany look, although Gregori’s faces do carry their expressions effectively throughout the pages, which helps the reader understand which bits of the book should be funny and which is the serious part. The vibrant colors are provided by Jasen Smith who seems to have been given a “bright is best” mandate, which for me, is just too strong.
I didn’t really this book at all. After the first issue, I has quite hopeful; there was an element of humour that accompanied Jack and Dorje’s quest, but that quickly moved aside for the visual and colors which are striking for the wrong reasons. If you think this book is something you would enjoy, please make sure that you pick up the first issue as it does give some structure to the overall story, which the series desperately needs.
- Written by Chris Lewis
Art by Tony Gregori
Colored by Jasen Smith
Lettered by Nic J Shaw
Edited by Nicole Boose, Andy Schmidt
Published by Comics Experience (CE)