Review – Tracker #4

Tracker #4 continues the story of Alex O’Roark, an FBI agent and newly minted werewolf, and his partner Jezebel Kendall as they track the serial killer Herod to try to stop his rain of terror. Top Cow brings us the story with Jonathan Lincoln writing and a new artist named Derec Donovan taking over. How could I best sum up what we know so far? There is a mysterious organization that is monitoring all of the werewolves and the primary contact that we’ve seen in this series has been Dr. Cyril Tucker. Tucker has introduced himself and told him of a cure; the one problem is that the cure requires the blood of the werewolf that turned you.

This leaves us with O’Roark having multiple motivations to capture Herod. Herod is a ruthless killer and the FBI Agent inside O’Roark naturally wants to put him behind bars. Herod also holds the key, so far as we know, to O’Roark being cured of this infection and returned to normal. The investigation has led to a school, and that is where this issue picks up.

The story is sort of on loop at the moment. O’Roark finds a person that he suspects is a werewolf and he tracks this person with his newfound abilities to track werewolves using enhanced senses. The person also happens to be a target of Herod who needs to drink werewolf blood to stay immortal. In this case O’Roark and Jezebel are dispatched to a school due to suspicious reports. One of the kids is infected, and he is constantly getting into fights due to being different. O’Roark convinces Jezebel and the other agents to set a trap using the kid for bait. We get a look at a bit of intrigue when Cyril actually warns Herod of the trap ahead of time, but somehow I don’t think Herod needed the warning. This is a person that mentioned to O’Roark that he wanted to help stop Herod; in fact I wonder if their organization isn’t hoping to study and adapt the virus for their own means.

During the course of the stakeout O’Roark blows off his vacation weekend which causes some expected strife at home with his girlfriend Tory. O’Roark and Herod clash and the kid's death is prevented, but another character feels the unfortunately repercussions of those actions. The story progressed some and I think Herod’s ultimate goal is to cause O’Roark to lose control and fight completely as a werewolf. At this point we have a definite final conflict set that I think will be pretty epic.

So I had grown attached to the sharp lines used by Francis Tsai and really felt that it fit the darkness of the series. The new turn in the art seems less hardcore. The artwork looks like a lot of Saturday morning cartoons you see these days. It reminds me some of The Anchor which readers may have seen reviewed on this site. The look and feel of some of the characters changed to the point of not recognizing people at first and that is never a good thing. Where the artwork excelled to me was in some truly creepy depictions of Herod in his transformed state. He looked really monstrous and I enjoyed that.

It will take some getting used to, but in the end isn’t really work altering in terms of overall enjoyment of the series, even if it is a little cartoonish for my taste in comic books. I still highly recommend it and can’t wait to see who wins out and how they do so in the fifth and final issue. Have a look below for some interiors.