Review: We(l)come Back #6

WelcomeBack_006_A_MainMali is on the run again in We(l)come Back #6, but this time, it’s not from Tessa. Rather, she and Tessa are running from the sequels attempting to kill them, a chase that’s shaping up to be marathon-levels of, well, running, with some guns thrown in for good measure.

Officially in the second arc of the story, writer Christopher Sebela and artist Claire Roe have seemingly returned with more confidence than ever. In the first arc, the story certainly wasn’t lacking direction. It had, in fact, several directions with any number of possible outcomes. With We(l)come Back #5, the narrative was shaped into something more definite, and #6 starts Mali and Tessa down a solid and extremely dangerous path.

This issue is equal parts action and information. As with most of the series, it is told from Mali’s perspective. There’s a little bit of a time jump between the previous issue and this one, but Mali’s narrative is a good segue to the present. The action is similar to scenes from previous issues, but with the added bonus of further insightful monologuing from Mali. One interesting thing about this comic is that fight scenes provide the most introspective commentary about the characters. In Mali’s world, she is most herself where she has been someone else: in battle. This makes for an interesting juxtaposition in a comic where so much of the focus has been on individual choice over expectation. The last arc was more about Mali trying to develop an individual identity outside of her past. So far, this arc continues the theme of self-questioning, but in a way that means focusing on the future rather than the past. 

Significant time is dedicated to further developing Tessa and Mali’s relationship in this issue. There are a few delightful moments of backstory involving the two. While they have known one another for centuries, their story in the modern age (the age in which the readers know them) spans a very short amount of time, making it necessary to flesh out their unique relationship (literally and figuratively).

While the Sebela took on these tough questions in the writing, artist Claire Roe had the task of bringing action to life. The art in We(l)come Back #6 was still the same clean style seen in #5, but just as the story hit a strong stride, so did Roe. This isn’t to say that the art in #5 was bad–quite the opposite–but Roe has seemingly gained confidence with each issue.

Sebela and Roe are a strong team, and We(l)come Back continues to amass intrigue. It does, however, leave Tessa and Mali with backs against the wall at all turns, begging the question of what could possibly come next.

Story: Christopher Sebela Art: Claire Roe
Story: 8.0
Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Buy

BOOM! Studios provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review.