By Monty Nero & Mike Dowling
The strange tale of Death Sentence continues with issue #4 this month. While the central plot didn’t roll forward a great deal, this latest installment further explores the bizarre situation from a number of perspectives and expands on the base of the protagonists’ current exploits.
One of the best parts about Death Sentence #4 was the terrific juxtaposition of creation and destruction featured throughout, particularly in the introduction. The issue opens with the character Monty surrounded by increasing chaos and destruction which he has purposefully caused. However, this is interspersed with images and narration of Verity describing her previous artistic passion and her increasing desire to create something. This theme shows up again later in the book and each time it is presented in a subtle, intelligent, and very effective manner. It remains difficult to foresee where the story will end up, but Monty Nero has consistently surprised in previous issues with unexpected plot turns.
This particular issue might feature some of the best visuals in this series to date. Mike Dowling’s work has a strong sense of realism which is apparent throughout each panel, while the art still retains a gritty quality. There are some particularly bizarre scenes in issue #4 and Dowling manages to capture the tone of each. He really gets a chance to shine in the final panels as Verity unleashes her powers and I hope we get to see more of this type of work in future installments.
The story in the latest issue of Death Sentence felt a little slow but the book remained enjoyable overall. While the ending seemed overly ambiguous, it certainly hinted at big things to come for this series. One of the main features of this book that has been personally appreciated is the way in which the plot details the different ways that people deal with end-of-life situations, and this felt particularly prominent this month. This series remains quite unique and deserves your attention.