Review – The Darkness #88

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Normally, I’m very psyched for new issues of The Darkness to come out.  The latest issue, The Darkness #88 though is a bit lacking.  Maybe it’s because I don’t know the full story of the main villain, or I don’t know the characters (other than Jackie Estacado) so I’m not quite  invested in them.  But overall I shrugged my shoulders when I finished reading this issue.

Enraged by the betrayal in the last issue from within his inner circle, Jackie Estacado moves to end his conflict with The Sovereign once and for all, and close the book on this chapter of his cursed life. Meanwhile, the Judas in Jackie’s crew learns just how much Estacado despises snakes in his midst.

Written by Phil Hester, who’s normally solid, the issue is one big fight and I never buy that Jackie is threatened or in any danger.  It’s interesting to see where things go and how they resolve and the opening page is fantastic, but the story itself is pretty blah.

If you’re a fan of The Darkness, then definitely pick it up, but it’s the end of a story arc so not good for new readers and as a whole isn’t the character or the series in the best light.

Plot: Hester wraps up this story arc and it’s an ok fight.  I’m never convinced that Jackie or his team is in tons of danger and overall the fight is pretty blah.  There might be some revelations that are bigger or more interesting for long time readers, but for me it was a fight, nothing more.  Rating: 7.5

Art:  Romano Molenaar takes up the art duty here.  It’s pretty decent, though not quite up to the usual standard of Top Cow.  The art isn’t bad, but as a whole there’s something that seems off.  It doesn’t blow me away, but it’s not bad either.  There’s some good detail and some interesting action, but it doesn’t blow me away like so much else of Top Cow’s products, it’s a case of being too good in art.  Rating: 7

Overall: The issue is ok.  It ends an arc and you needed a showdown with the villain.  It is what it is, a fight.  The last issue was fantastic, and the first page of this issue is interesting, but overall, unless your a die-hard Darkness fan, wait until next issue to give this series a shot.  Overall rating: 7.25

Recommendation: Read

Page count: 32 pages    Price: $2.99     Release: 1/5/11

Top Cow provided Graphic Policy with an advance copy of this issue for FREE for review.