Review - Fathom Vol. 4 #5

There's a whole lot going on in the depths of the ocean. A whole lot that you probably wouldn't know about seeing as how we can't quite manage to get down that deep. Aspen Matthews can though, the child of Black and Blue and unsung hero of the waters. And she sees a lot of this stuff firsthand.

Fathom Vol. 4 #5 from Aspen Comics continues her experience. It's written by Scott Lobdell and David Wohl, penciled by Alex Konat and Cory Smith, colored by Beth Sotelo and lettered by Josh Reed.

Aspen is faced with the mysterious Church of the Eternal Depths. It's an institution that has roots in the Japanese government and are tapping these roots to further bolster its power. Facing the Church on her own is a little difficult, so she's enlisted the help of Galit to destroy the Church.

In the course of seeking the Church's destruction though, Aspen learns that they're a bit more advanced than previously thought. That is, they have weapons adapted from Blue technology, which is something that a power hungry organization bent on world domnination should really have free access to. And the access isn't completely innocent, as it's revealed there's a cultish, sacrifice aspect to the proceedings as well.

The way Lobdell and Wohl tell the story in this issue is sort of a flashback. It starts in the present in the first few pages and then chronologically works its way back to that point from a few hours prior. It's a good way to tell the story from a historical perspective where the reader knows the ending so to speak. Breaks up the monotony of the standard flashback.

Konat and Smith are comfortable with Aspen and co. at this point and the pencils are largely in line with what's already been seen. There are a lot of zoomed-in shots of the characters during certain emotional moments that give the reader more of a connection with the moment. The colors by Sotelo lend a dinginess to the proceedings as well. The ocean is supposed to be this majestic creature full of vibrant colors, but this ocean is red, orange and being "polluted" by evil intentions.

Fathom Vol. 4 #5 is something more of a primer than anything for the next issue, titled "Oceanic Holocaust." The motives of the Church are revealed a bit, as are some of the reasons for the Japanese government to be involved. There are even some surprises as far as character appearances go. It's a solid transition that poses a few questions and gives the reader something to look forward to.

Fathom Vol. 4 #5 is available in stores now and interiors are below.