Review: Shadowman #3
Masters of terror Cullen Bunn and Jon Davis-Hunt continue their terrifying tour of Shadowman’s world by bringing the supernatural defender to Barcelona where he’ll encounter a sinister undertaker in Shadowman #3.
I often wonder when I read a comic whether the small things that I love are the same things that others enjoy. Case in point, once again, is the recap page. I’m always fond of recap pages in principle because my memory isn’t what it was when I was a kid and didn’t have to remember hundreds of things for work, but when the recap is provided in character by Baron Samedi it really gets me in the right frame of mind for what’s about to come.
I know this is likely going to come as somewhat of a surprise, but Shadowman #3 has some genuinely funny moments within its pages – and almost all of the center around Samedi himself. This isn’t a comedy story, but rather Cullen Bunn injecting small moments of humor into a book you’d not immediately associate humor with. It’s these fun moments that elevate what is otherwise a story steeped in the horror genre – typically not something I would usually be drawn to, but then this is a comic that’s got a lot to offer those who aren’t typically horror fans.
The comic, written by Cullen Bunn, with art by Jon Davis-Hunt and colours by Jordie Bellair, has Shadowman chasing down information from a wonderfully bizarre loa that deals in secrets, before something ends up going slightly wrong. Shadowman #3 continues Bunn’s trend with the series of having an almost self contained story. Though this issue builds on the previous a little more than the second did with the first, you can still enjoy the comic if you haven’t read the other two (though why you wouldn’t read such fine examples of the medium I’m not sure). Without spoiling anything, there’s a scene that had me grinning from ear to ear which is then followed by a panel that is understated and yet completely awesome (pages 19-21 in the comic/after the ad for coffee). That sequence alone was worth my price of admission (granted I read a review copy, but will be buying the floppy when I get to my LCS).
I can’t say enough good things about Davis-Hunt’s artwork. It’s not a super realistic style, but this has become my Shadowman; Davis-Hunt’s design suits the character to a tee, and the way he brings Jack Boniface to life, the expressions on his face and the physicality in the way he moves across the page genuinely brings a smile to my face. The creative team are probably one of the finest that Valiant have pulled together in a long time, and it shows in their work.
As a series, Shadowman is easily one of the best things Valiant has put out in a long time, and for my money is the best thing on the racks right now. This series gets better every issue.
Story: Cullen Bunn Art: Jon Davis-Hunt
Colours: Jordie Bellaire Letters: Clayton Cowles
Story: 9.7 Art: 9.7 Overall: 9.7 Recommendation: Buy
Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review