Readers will be thoroughly entertained by the bloody images and well-developed characterizations in Spirit Of The Law #1. In this combination of noir and horror, the characters are interestingly well-written and the mystery slowly elaborates on the revenge aspect. As the story proceeds along at an intentionally steady pace, readers will find themselves drawn to an entertaining thriller.
WRITTEN BY: Brandon Seifert
ART BY: Michael Montenat
PUBLISHER: MonkeyBrain Comics
RELEASE: October 31st, 2012
During the middle of the night, a young woman suddenly wakes up from her deep slumber after hearing a strange loud noise. As she wanders across her hallways half-asleep, the young woman doesn’t realize there are intruders in her house. Out of nowhere, four men ambush and kidnap her, locking her in the trunk of their car. As she is blindfolded, the young woman curses at her kidnappers, sending them on a path straight to Hell.
What is great about Brandon Seifert’s writing, is how he is able to bring in the humanity of an unlikable antagonist. As a criminal, Sam is a hired goon who never asks questions and always follows orders. Sam never asks why he is supposed to kidnap and kill the young woman. But outside of his crime life, Sam is a devoted father and truly cares for his son. You end up rooting for Sam to find redemption but it is too late for him.
Seifert plays around with the dialogue before revealing the truth of his character’s troubles. What one person is saying isn’t exactly what they mean. With their son right in front of them, Sam and his wife are hinting at the breakdown of their marriage. Sam’s wife possibly knows what he really does for a living. She knows he will come back home late during the midnight hours and his hands will be stained with blood. Though she doesn’t like her husband being a killer-for-hire, Sam explains their need for money, as a need for justification. As his decisions come back to haunt him, Sam doesn’t realize the unknown woman he just murdered, was someone very important.
Artist Michael Montenat captures the lingering consequences of bad choices and guilt. In close-ups, Montenat portrays Sam’s hesitation in pulling the trigger, just as he is about the kill the kidnapped woman. As the murdered woman resurrects as a vicious killing machine, the murders appear to be vicious and cold-hearted. Montenat doesn’t shy away from the violence, showing readers how a hired goon gets killed, with a sword plunged right through his gut. Montenat shocks readers with an incredibly graphic image of a man’s chest split open, with his intestines falling out.
Sam and his henchmen look like they belong in post-noir movies, such as L.A. Confidential and Chinatown. Sam captures the ’50s look with the trenchcoats and fedora hats. As a twisted personification of Lady Justice, the ghost killer is wearing a dirty white gown and has a blindfold over her eyes.
As a morality tale and revenge thriller, “Spirit Of The Law” #1 will surely captivate readers with its well-written narrative and striking artwork. Readers will find themselves rooting for the protagonist and antagonist as the death count starts rising.
Reviewed by Jorge Solis