Overview

Spawn #145

Review

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Spawn #145

Credits

  • Words: Todd McFarlane and Brian Holguin
  • Art: Angel Medina
  • Inks: Danny Miki, Victor Olazaba, Allen Martinez, and Crime Lab Studios
  • Colors: Brian Haberlin
  • Story Title: Destination Anywhere- Part One
  • Publisher: Image Comics
  • Price: $2.50
  • Release Date: Apr 20, 2005

I think it’s time to admit that I have a problem.

I still like and listen to "new" Metallica. I still hold out hope that the Star Wars prequel trilogy won’t be as abysmally disappointing when it’s completed as we’ve all been suspecting it will be for the past six years. And I still occasionally pick up a copy of Spawn.

Hannibal (that’s the dude who sells me my comics) found out I review comics a few weeks ago and took the liberty of leafing through my stack and offering a few opinions. "Good. Bad. Where it all went wrong. Best one this week," and holding up Spawn, "you’re the only one in America who still buys this." I sort of suspected this was true, but as we’ve seen demonstrated above, I’m like the dog they kick and who just keeps coming back for more.

So here’s the whole skinny on Spawn from right about the point I think a lot of you stopped reading: Spawn gets pissed and actually quits his favorite task of brooding long enough to take the fight to Hell’s door, and coinciding with issue 100 of once the most popular and talked-about comic of our generation, creator Todd McFarlane kills off Angela, the hottie assassin on Heaven’s payroll. This happened to neatly tie up loose ends in a certain lawsuit with Neil Gaiman over who owned certain characters including the lovely Angela.

So then the Big Reveal. Spawn kills Malbogea and assisted by that Yoda-ish old man Cogliostro, takes the throne of Hell. This lasts like a page before the betrayal. Because, you see, Cogliostro is actually Cain (of Cain and Abel, don’t ya know). Cain takes the throne for himself. Al loses his Spawn powers but gets his face kinda back for the umpteenth time and...

Nothing.

For 45 issues precious little has happened on a month-to-month basis in this title. It’s kind of the unsung crime of our generation. Because, you see, the comic book industry has a problem and that problem is that it hasn’t been able in recent memory to replicate the kind of successes and the lasting popularity of its original pantheon. There hasn’t been a new character that rose to the heights of say, Spider-Man or Superman or even Thor or the Green Arrow since, well, since those guys. Except Spawn. And now it seems all but certain that the sun has set on poor Al Simmons, too.

So here we are at #145. Leading up to #150, it looks like something big is almost afoot. This issue is the best one in a long time. Plot moves forward. There’s an actual mystery and some interesting occult action to boot. And then there’s the artwork.

McFarlane’s original artwork was eye-popping in its day. Greg Capullo (who still does the covers) took that art to a scary, scary new place. And now we have Angel Medina who is such a terrific replacement for Capullo that it took me a few issues to realize someone new took over. Say what you want about the book’s story. Spawn has style out the wazoo. This is consistently one of the coolest-looking comic books on the stands and the layouts in this book, though sometimes over-the-top, are the kind of thing that really make you appreciate that there is an art to laying out a comic book.

The overall story is mature and thoughtful, too. The problem is just that it’s so plodding. Less being sulky is needed and more action is required.

If you strayed from the flock, I can’t tell you that Spawn’s worth going back to. I wish I could. #144 is a good place to give it a shot again and #145 here gives me hope, but it’s not even on the same tier as my hopes that say, Anakin won’t be a whiney brat this time, or that maybe all Metallica post 1992 was just a phase.

Come on, Todd. You did it once and you can do it again. That much I can hope for.

-Jesse Vigil

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