Season Nine of the Buffyverse has been so consistently awesome, that it’s almost painful to see one of the major spin-offs fizzle out into ineffective filler material. Unfortunately, that’s exactly the case for Victor Gischler’s Spike #3. Following the events of “A Dark Place” #2, Spike meets a demon in distress named Morgan, and gets reacquainted with the nasty Pearl and Nash; all of whom are after the pieces of the destroyed Seed buried in the rubble formerly known as Sunnydale.
WRITTEN BY: Victor Gischler
ART BY: Paul Lee
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
RELEASE: October 24th
Part 3 begins with a flashback to Rome in 1953, where we meet an 18 year old Pearl and a young Nash who are caught up in some Black Widower Demon sex drama. Spike happens to have business with this particular demon so he shows up in all his greaser glory and decapitates the beast right as Drusilla makes her first cameo appearance of the series. Disregarding the fact that a flashback in “The Girl in Question” puts Spike and Dru in Italy in the 1950s, Gischler’s Pearl and Nash seems to be out of character and extremely superfluous in both flashback and present scenes. The readers get to touch on a bit of the backstory between Pearl, Nash, and Spike, though there’s not nearly enough presented to get anything significant out of the scene.
The rest of the issue deals with Spike, Morgan, and the bug minions in orbit aboard his ship. Past assumptions concerning Morgan’s succubus background are kicked to the curb as she reveals she’s a “high end” type of female sex demon, if you will. The fact that Gischler feels the need to establish the fact that Morgan is a classier companion, as opposed to your run-of-the-mill succubae, seems like indirect slut-shaming to me. Why is one more or less acceptable than the other?
The plot appears to be advancing, but it’s happening at such a slow pace that it’s hard to be sure how the series is going to play out. Makes you wonder how Gischler’s going to tie the story together to make for a satisfying end with only 2 more issues left.
Overall, Spike’s sarcastic retorts and his affinity for dark humor is handled really well, but the British slang placed in the dialogue comes off as forced. The third installment brings about less action on the pages but more dialogue and self-reflective monologues from our male protagonist. In terms of the artwork, Paul Lee continues to deliver uncanny likeness to the already established characters from the franchise on pencils; and Andy Owens remains consistent with his inks.
Reviewed by – ShadowJayd