Friday, May 11, 2012

Fatale #5

Written by Ed Brubaker
Art by Sean Phillips

The first 'book' of Brubaker and Phillips's Fatale ends with this issue, as the reader really starts to see things come together.  Main character (of the flashback sequences, at least) Hank Raines has been abducted by the cultists, while Walt Booker, having performed some blood magic on himself, goes to meet with Josephine for what is probably the last time.

Since this book began, it's been a bit of a guessing game to try to figure out where each character's loyalties lie.  It's been clear that Hank is under Jo's spell, as Booker used to be, but the extent to which Booker has escaped her influence has never been too clear.

Those questions get cleared up here, and not necessarily in the way I expected.  We also get a good sense of the threat posed by Bishop and his people, and everyone ends up in a big fight scene in some creepy tunnels under San Francisco.

The issue then moves to an epilogue set in our time, where Nick is still trying to piece together what happened to his godfather, and what has happened to him.  I'm not sure if the next arc is going to remain in the current day, or if we will also see more flashbacks to Hank Raines's day.

Fatale has been a huge success for Brubaker and Phillips, and it is completely deserving of that, although I'm a little surprised that Criminal, their noir crime series, hasn't been more popular, as it was a much more accessible piece of work.  Who knows - maybe there is a renaissance of more sophisticated comics readers underway?  Or maybe it's just because Image better knows how to market a book like this than Marvel can.

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