DOCTOR STRANGE #18 (LGY #408)
After narrowly avoiding the end of the known universe Stephen settles back into a more relatable scenario and takes on the might of the more common or garden variety demon. Strange gatecrashes as a family is making ready for a celebratory party for their young daughter. His aim is to stop the demon Xennerac from crossing into the earthly plane, but the result is far more than they anticipated. And after severely trashing their home to expunge the demon and wearing out his welcome, Strange just manages to redeem himself by ensuring all is magically fixed in time for young Madison’s party.
And so it must be the end times for us to witness the Second Coming of Jesús. Yes it’s true, just two more issues to go and he’s back on full art duties folks. And I for one have missed him. Though Kitson and Koblish suited the previous story and the style of Galactus and Eternity, this was a welcome sight for me. His rendition of Xennerac bleeding into the home of the Stanton’s was a reminder of how epic and cinematic he can make the up close and smaller scale threat.
And making Xennerac so poetically minded was a nice touch. Also the…Stantons? Are we really not going to comment on that name and it’s significance to Strange? I hope there is an explanation later as to either the commonality of the name, or Zelma maybe shows up later and mentions she’s been told of his exploits at a family gathering. Even though I felt Mark Waid bit off a little more than he could chew with the last arc, it seems he has found some sense of balance once more with a more sedate and close to home story. I say sedate but really it was perfect chaos. The up close and personal is more his bag here and I felt he was on familiar territory at last. There was also quite a bit of comedic timing in the way events unfolded, which has been missing of late.
And not only was it perfectly placed and didn’t skip a single beat…….
But it didn’t let up once and permeated the whole issue…..
Also the offhand destructive nature of his antics simply added to his return to arrogant form as the surgeon with the non existent bedside manner. That for me just compounded the humour and made it all the more enjoyable. Especially little touches like having the father show jealousy at the family dog obeying a stranger over him.
Overall though given that this wasn’t a plot led story it was still full on action and a good distraction. As well as a bit of light relief from what has gone before and a breathe of fresh air. It does make me wonder how good the finale can be though if it’s constrained to just two issues. But let’s worry about that later. For now it has to be said this was an engaging and charmingly diversionary instalment.
Back in familiar territory at last with a story more suited to Strange and his personality. With some up close and personal interaction and mild threat of a breach in the dimensional barriers thrown in. As well as a bit of cosmic plumbing for good measure.
Doctor Strange #18: You Say House Call I Say Home Invasion
- Writing - 8.5/108.5/10
- Storyline - 9/109/10
- Art - 9.5/109.5/10
- Color - 9/109/10
- Cover Art - 9/109/10
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