Elektra #3 (Marvel)

Elektra3

Rating: 4/5 – A Beautiful Depiction of Dark and Violent Themes.
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Shawn Hoklas.

Although Elektra has always been a dark character, this new series is even darker. There’s a grim theme to the book along with heavy violence as Elektra is explored in this solo series. These violent themes are wrapped up in a beautiful package with stunningly gorgeous art. The art somehow makes the violence seem pretty, while the writing also does a great job of making you connect and feel for an assassin. In this third issue, Elektra heads into some impressive landscapes as she continues her hunt for the aged assassin known as Cape Crow.

Elektra isn’t the only assassin after Cape Crow. The deadly and disturbing Bloody Lips is also on the hunt. Where does a killer get a name like Bloody Lips? He eats and digests parts of people in order track and learn everything he can about them (borrowing a power from John Layman’s cibopathic ‘Chew’). In this issue’s opening pages, artist Michael Del Mundo draws a beautiful double page splash that explores the landscape of Lip’s victim’s thoughts and memories after tasting some of Elektra’s blood. He’s also able to discern Elektra’s whereabouts and tracks them to an underwater city called Shicheng. Del Mundo uses this enviroment to show off his skills, again rendering the action and violence in a stunning and exquisite way. The painted look provides depth to the page and really works for the underwater setting. The art continues to be the strongest part of the series, but W. Haden Blackman’s writing is holding it’s own against the art.

Blackman has done a great job of defining Elektra as a character, making her something more than just an introverted assassin. Not only that, but he’s also creating some compelling characters in Cape Crow’s son Kento, as well as Bloody Lips. His story is full of word balloons that show the internal thoughts of the characters, allowing the reader to connect with characters that from the outside are brutal killers, but internally are more complex and interesting.

As this third issue comes to its conclusion, the ending seems a bit abrupt and surprising, but Blackman has earned my trust to follow up on that ending in the next issue. If you haven’t been an Elektra fan in the past, this new series will do it’s best to convert you, this series is something special.  The art is something that can be enjoyed whether you’re a fan of Elektra or not.  So many comics tend to blend together with a certain feeling of sameness, this Elektra series is not like any other book on the stands and that is something to applaud.  Give it a look next time you’re in the comic shop.

Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
(shawn@comicspectrum.com
)
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