The Shadow #8

by JohnP on November 21, 2012

The Shadow chases some thug down an ill-lit, Spanish alleyway.  He demands information and “I know nothing!” isn’t gonna cut it.  Without batting an eye, our hero snaps one of the thug’s fingers.  A gun in his face, the crook tells all he knows.  This awesome opening scene sets the stage for an issue that is a return to form for Dynamite’s The Shadow.


The series came out of the gate with a high profile six issue arc by the great Garth Ennis.  While that brief run may have been well-written, this reviewer agrees with many who say it was missing some intangible essence that makes The Shadow what it is.  All the trappings were there, but somehow it didn’t feel quite right.  Swapping Victor Gischler (Punisher, Deadpool) for Ennis seems to have changed all that.


After a slightly lackluster issue 7, The Shadow now is infused with new life.  The ultra-violence that Ennis showed us in his run remains, but Gischler somehow adds that dark, mysterious tone – that classic Shadow eeriness – that was lacking before.  The new storyline finds Lamont Cranston still suffering from a reduction in powers due to the massacre in the monastery where he was taught.  The trail of a murder brings him into the world of gun smugglers in the Spanish Civil War.  Cranston proves more James Bond than Robert Jordan, though, opting for car chases and sleeping with the enemy over embedding in a cave and blowing a bridge.  As The Shadow follows the path of the black market dealings, it will lead to a surprising encounter with a familiar face that teases more intrigue to come. 


The first issue in the “Revolutionary” arc shows a fantastic beginning for the new team and has instilled creative new energy into an already thriving title.  Even Aaron Campbell’s art seems to have taken on a new, more Shadow-y tone.  I have great expectations for the future of The Shadow with Gischler on board and can’t wait to see where this arc takes the story.  For anyone who hasn’t been reading, this issue is the perfect place to start.

Our Score:


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