Monday, December 16, 2013
"Congratulations! Of all the demons I've ripped out of innocent people, I think this is gonna be the one I enjoy most."
As a ghost, you can do so many cool things that you couldn't do otherwise. The biggest thing you can't do though is breathe and be alive in the technical sense, but there's still a lot that you can get done as a spirit. Hunting down demons is one of those things you can do as a ghost, especially as a ghost champion who goes by the name Ghost in the aptly named Ghost #1 from Dark Horse Comics.
The story is by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Chris Sebela, illustrated by Ryan Sook, colored by Dave McCaig and lettered by Richard Starkings and Comicraft.
Ghost, the hero trapped between two worlds, fights to protect Chicago from extradimensional demons disguised as humans. She catches up with a familiar one wreaking havoc on an El train, prompting her to spring into action to investigate further what brought him out into the open. It turns out, there's a lot more afoot than she previously realized and she strikes a deal with another demon to learn more about the situation and her past. There's a lot of demons, in case you couldn't tell.
There's a lot of Constantine in the issue, with Ghost chasing down demons disguised as humans in an effort to learn more about her past and abilities. DeConnick and Sebela combine to do a great job in offering dialogue the flows very well and feels organic, depicting conversations that don't feel forced. Ghost's motivation in fighting the demons isn't a mystery, in that she wants to stop the demons from terrorizing humanity, but she also wants to discover more about herself. The story does well in accommodating both goals and conveying to the reader a rather adventurous tale of mystery and demon slaying. It's a heady mix of the two seemingly disparate concepts.
Sook's art is very well done. Ghost is illustrated with a lot of physical presence, even as she floats in and out of physical objects with abandon. The demons themselves are pretty terrifying when in that form, presenting a true challenge for the ethereal champion. Panels are laid out in a familiar fashion, with Sook primarily relying on standard rectangles in grid fashion on all pages. There's a lot of attention paid to the outlines of the characters, as they're strongly defined by bold, black lines. What's more is that the illustrations feel very kinetic and match the dialogue's flow very well.
Ghost #1 enters rather familiar territory in presenting a character many may be familiar with, but advances the story in a great way. The deal made with the demon is very fascinating and one that isn't often depicted in stories such as this, as typically the demon and demon-hunters are at very great odds with one another. The story has also set up a much bigger villain who readers of the franchise to this point should be very familiar with, relying on that familiarity for some built-in tension. Ghost #1 is fast-moving book that's very enjoyable to read and capitalizes on the familiar hunting demons dynamic.
Ghost #1 is available in stores December 18 with interiors below.