Amara prepares for the showdown of a generation, aided by family and coaching that only the ring can bring. But winning the war in the ring can only go so far, while the war in the boardroom remains… Creed: The Next Round #4 wraps up an intriguing extension of the Rocky and Creed brand.
Overseen by Michael B. Jordan and written by Latoya Morgan and Jai Jamison, Creed: The Next Round has been an interesting way to further extend the Creed storyline started not too long ago. The series picked up on a throwaway line from the third film, diving deeper into Adonis Creed’s siblings as Adonis’ daughter attempts to carve her own legacy in the ring.
The series has been decent overall. It has done a solid job of expanding the franchise in logical ways and opening things up further to explore. Where it slips, and does so in Creed: The Next Round #4, is rushing things. The series should have been a four issue series. It feels too compressed, too condense. Not enough of its solid ideas are given enough room to expand and explore. The story overall feels like a three act play stuffed into four issues.
In Creed: The Next Round #4 not only do we need to deal with Adonis’ sibling issues but Amara’s big fight. It all is wrapped up well enough but everything deserved more. More interesting imagery, more emotion, more drama, and more boxing. The issue hits the beats you’d expect but doesn’t deliver the “f-yeah” feeling you’d expect. There’s something missing that both Creed and Rocky films nailed consistently. A montage is cut short. The fights never quite delivering the dance you want or the brutality you expect. A graphic novel for each act would have allowed for exactly that as well as build more into the family drama of Adonis, his wife, and daughter as well as Adonis and his siblings. Everything feels rather… rushed, as if it’s up against a bell.
The art is a bit mixed too. The series has had moments of greatness but these past two issues have slipped a bit. Paris Alleyene, Lea Caballero, and Wilton Santos handle the pencils and ink while Gab Contreras and DJ Chavis handle color with Andworld Design on lettering. While there’s some interesting visual moments, the art style of the three is different enough to notice and unlike earlier issues, some of the characters don’t look as much like their onscreen counterparts. BOOM! has had some issues with multiple artists on titles lately and this is a prime example of that working against the end result.
Creed: The Next Round #4 is a fine ending to the series. It leaves things open for some interesting next chapters and new directions for the franchise to go in. Hopefully, someone believes in that potential and keeps things going. A comic spin-off of the film series that delivers the next chapter is a great way to go and a lower barrier to dive further into and expand the world of the Creed family.
Story: Latoya Morgan, Jai Jamison Art/Ink: Paris Alleyene, Lea Caballero, Wilton Santos
Color: Gab Contreras, DJ Chavis Letterer: Andworld Design
Story: 7.25 Art: 7.0 Overall: 7.1 Recommendation: Read
BOOM! Studios provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review