Monday, July 5, 2010

Lucifer Vol. 5: Inferno

Written by Mike Carey
Art by Peter Gross, Ryan Kelly, Dean Ormston, and Craig Hamilton

It's been a while since I last read any of the Lucifer series, so it took me a little while to get back into the swing of the title with this volume.  A re-cap page or something that just listed off the characters would have been very helpful.

In this volume, Lucifer must complete his duel with Amenadiel, the angel who challenged him a while back, despite the fact that he is in a weakened state.  The combat takes place in Hell, and any number of the secondary characters from the first four volumes of the title make their appearance.  This is where I started to get confused, as I couldn't always remember the exact relationship between people.

As usual, there is double-cross upon double-cross, as Lucifer enacts complex schemes, while his faithful assistant Mazikeen hunts down the Japanese god who has stolen Lucifer's power.  Also included in the book are a two-part story concerning Solomon's quest to find the killer of Elaine Belloc, and a one-off about a grocer who helps a demon to deliver a baby.

I admire the way that Carey set up his story to last over a very long stretch of comics, but the sheer number of characters and sub-plots makes it difficult to follow the story unless its read in a short span of time.  He writes Lucifer much like Priest wrote the Black Panther during his classic run; always three steps ahead of everyone else and completely non-plussed by whatever is going on around him.

The art in this book is always great, in that very classic Vertigo way.

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