Doctor Doom #9 Review

by Charles Martin on November 25, 2020

Doctor Doom #9 Review
Writer: Christopher Cantwell
Artist: Salvador Larroca
Colourist: Guru-eFX
Letterer: Cory Petit
Publisher: Marvel Comics

This issue opens with Doom set to save the day. He's headed to the moon with 10 Doombots, a bigass laser, and a solid plan to dissipate the Antlion black hole.

We learn about this through a newscast voiceover, segueing into real dialogue as Doom explains his plans. And Reed Richards is back on Earth, using Captain America as a sounding board to announce his faith in Victor's plan.

It's a pretty expository script, using the newscaster and Doom to thoroughly describe the plot developments. And Doom moves into some heavy-duty technobabble when he gets to laser-ing in the final act.

Though the words risk coming off slightly dry, they're given a huge boost by the visuals. Salvador Larroca's art is well-blocked, highly detailed, and full of narrative flow. It does a superb job of unfolding a powerful story on its own while the captions are exploring past or future events.

Guru-eFX adds the finishing touch to the visuals with an icy blue palette for this moon-adventure. He livens the colours with vivid contrasts coming from Doom's laser, and the black hole (surely taken from Interstellar?) hangs like a baleful orange eye over the proceedings.

Don't take my earlier nitpicking as evidence that I was unsatisfied with the script. Christopher Cantwell knows exactly what he wants his words to do, and what they do is trap Doom in a nigh-Shakespearean tragedy of hubris and self-defeat. 

It all hinges on Doom's psychology and the fragility that lurks just beneath his blustery bravado. Reed Richards calls him to wish him luck, and that conversation becomes Doom's undoing.

The final act features a nifty conceit where Doom discusses Reed with his Doombots. Since Doombots are, of course, made in Doom's image, they serve as mirrors reflecting his worst traits. (Which ties thematically to the save-the-day plan in that big mirrors are required to bounce the big laser beam around.) 

In this issue, Doctor Doom's plan for saving the world and redeeming himself goes awry thanks to self-sabotage. It's quintessentially in-character for the villain-turned-antihero. A cerebral script is handily supported by powerful art, allowing the book to dive deep into Doom's psyche while also telling an exciting super-science adventure story.

Our Score:


A Look Inside


Charles Martin's picture
Salvador Larroca draws one hell of a doomsday laser. He's great at gadgets!