When Bob becomes the Sentry, he risks unleashing the Void, an unstoppable destructive force born of Bob’s subconscious. With the help of Doctor Strange and Iron Man, Bob found balance. Using a device called the Confluctor, Bob could enter an imaginary dreamscape where the Sentry and the void roam free, while Bob lived a mostly normal life in the real world.
But the arrangement was probationary, and when the Confluctor was stolen, Misty Knight and Iron Man quickly took Bob into custody. The threat of losing his freedom transformed Bob into the Sentry, but without the Confluctor, Bob himself was thrown into Sentry World…just in time to see Cranio murder the last member of his Sentry Family.
The issue prior to this was an explosive story with many different narrative threads exploring the consequences of the Sentry and the Void. This issue, however, expands on those events by offering an intricate story detailing the actions of Billy aka Scout, and his recruitment of the retired villain once known as Cranio. These two worked together in a twisted scheme to overthrow Bob as the Sentry and establish themselves as supers in the real world. Where the last issue was action-packed and harrowing, this one plays off of the established narrative threads to weave a story of deception and absolute villainy.
Series writer Jeff Lemire is well known for the high level of quality he brings to his writing, and his Sentry run is proving to be a showcase of this talent. Following a solid beginning, the third issue expands on the lore and provides emotional complexity to support the recent character developments. Cranio’s arrival into the Sentry World quickly turned devastating, but now we know that is actually only half of the danger, with Scout now seeking to overthrow the Sentry in the real world. This has created a beautiful duality between both Bob and the Sentry’s story that explores the consequences of the two-sided nature of the character.
The artistic direction is both unique and brilliant in almost every aspect from pencils to coloring to letters. The execution has been consistently great so far, and this issue doesn’t fail to deliver. Cranio commands some of the more powerful panels, but even the dialogue scenes are depicted incredibly well.
While the first two issues kicked off a great story of the Sentry, this issue falters slightly by not including the titular character, Sentry. By focusing on the elaborate intentions of those conspiring against him, the issue loses its focus on both Bob and the Sentry. While I think it is a risk that paid off very well for the overall story, some may find the lack of Sentry’s presence in his own book a bit odd.
The new Sentry series is quickly shaping up to be an epic story of conflicting dualities and otherworldly deception. While this issue isn’t quite as action-packed as the prior entries, it provides a necessary foundation of emotional intent that will benefit future issues to come.
Jeff Lemire delivers an issue from alternative perspectives to create a sprawling story that is nothing short of epic. Though the latest entry briefly loses focus on the main character, it is one that fans absolutely won’t want to miss.
Sentry #3: The Loyal Pal
Writing - 9/109/10
Storyline - 9/109/10
Art - 9/109/10
Color - 8/108/10
Cover Art - 6/106/10
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