The Fox #5 (Dark Circle)

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CREDIT: Dark Circle Comics

Rating: 4.5/5 – Look and Feel of a Great Silver Age Comic.
by ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.

After the first successful mini series, Dean Haspiel and Mark Waid returned for a second series of The Fox titled Foxhunt. With the fifth and final issue of this second mini series under Archie’s Dark Circle Comics banner, The Fox teams up with his wife to try and save their son who’s being held captive by the villainous Mr. Smile. This concluding issue wraps everything up in a satisfying manner, while also having some serious consequences for the “Fox Family” going forward.

The Fox looks and feels like the best of Silver Age comics, but reads with a modern touch and a fantastic yet subtle sense of humor. I loved this issue’s opening sequence as Fox enters Mr. Smile’s building and encounters five villains he’s put together to stop the Fox’s attempt at saving his son. Mighty Man, Radiation Rogue and Bull Frog are just three of the rogues we get to see, but unfortunately they don’t stick around long as Mr. Smile steps in with a Fox suit of his own that shares similarities with Marvel’s Iron Man. Haspiel’s designs of the villains are great and I’d love to see him and Waid explore some short stories about these villains in future series as they’re all sorts of silver age-goofy, but in the best way possible.

While The Fox has mostly been less serious and graphic in its tone, this issue did push the violence up a bit and ended with repercussions that look as though they’ll carry on past this series. Haspiel and Waid’s dialogue read great throughout, and although this issue lacked the amount of humor found in previous issues, there were still some funny lines that came along at just the right times. Haspiel’s pencils are so clean and so consistent for the entirety of this issue, while Allen Passalaqua ’s colors perfectly match the style. When the action and violence ramp up, Passalaqua uses a lot of different shades of red to color the sequence which just works so well to highlight the danger the Fox family are in.

I’m not sure what’s next for the Fox after this as I don’t think a new series has been announced yet, but when there is one I’ll definitely be back. Archie’s Dark Circle line of comics has been a pleasant surprise and The Fox stands out among them as one of the best. Haspiel and Waid tell a serious story without ever taking themselves, or more importantly The Fox too seriously. I’d encourage you to give this series a try as The Fox is a solid and fun comic done right.

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