SHADOW SERVICE #6
Gina Myers has taken Quill and fled from MI-666 but Hex is not about to give up on getting both of them back no matter who's skin he has to burn to get them or where he has to send Wraith One and Two to get them back...
This issue splits itself between the pursuit of Gina and Quill by Mi-666 and giving us the history of Wraith One. We get a rather grotesque interrogation of Edwin the rat by Hex to learn Gina and Quill’s location and an excellent surveillance and chase scene which is a break-neck race through the streets of Rome with cars, motorcycles, Abaddons, and magic.
The action scenes are well-executed and exciting which helps with the pacing of the issue, Scott tempers the action by giving us a look into the history of Wraith One formerly Lance Corporal Sidhu who Scott uses as the focus of the issue. The past issues have focused very much on Gina’s internal monologue but Scott switches it up by making it Wraith One’s as we learn why she is as cold and unfeeling as she is and the reason is in fact quite tragic. The tragedy of the character is that she is unfeeling because of a procedure that was performed on her involving a magical item after a near-fatal combat injury but she remembers feeling and therein lies the curse of what she has become. For me, Wraith One has been a less than sympathetic figure throughout the series but this issue helps flesh her out and give her some depth as a character which makes her actions and motivation more apparent.
I’m still not convinced that everything about MI666 is on the up and up. Hex comes across as particularly cruel and opportunistic (especially when you look at how he has recruited Wraith One and Two) but maybe my instincts are wrong here. It’s solid writing from Scott that drives the main plotline forward with some action as well as developing one of the characters. and the shift in perspective works well to give the opening issue in the new arc a fresh and intriguing feel. As always Scott leaves you with a sense of mystery and unanswered questions every issue that compels you to want to know what happens next.
The art from Corin Howell is excellent in this opener of the second arc. Multiple angles are explored and Howell is very good at showing dynamic motion on the page especially when there is rapid motion like during the high-speed pursuit and action scenes in the issue. I enjoy when artists are aware of the location of the characters, it may seem like a small detail but having the vehicles be very much of European design and identifiable as real brands is a deft touch that needs to be acknowledged. In every issue, there’s some sort of monster which is something I love about this series, and this issue it’s an Abaddon brought to life by Howell’s fantastic linework and Triona Farrel’s colors with two really excellent single splashes in this issue.
One of the things I don’t like is when the eyes of characters are soulless but that’s not a concern with Howell who’s eyes are never cold (even in the unfeeling Wraith One’s case) but expressive across a range of emotions. You feel Gina’s fatigue and the emotions of the other characters through the eyes.
Shadow Service #6 kicks of off the second arc of the series with a great balance of solid supernatural action and keeps it fresh by switching the point of view to one of the other characters in the cast as we get pulled further and further into the power struggle between Mi-666 and the mysterious Lady Yastrik.
SHADOW SERVICE #6: When in Rome… RUN
Writing - 8.5/10
Storyline - 8.5/10
Art - 8.5/10
Color - 8.5/10
Cover Art - 8/10
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