By Monty Nero & Mike Dowling
Although Death Sentence will be back, this marks the end of this initial series. Issue #6 had a fairly satisfying ending, if a little hollow. This series has been interesting, but while some moments were really terrific, the overall story left something to be desired. This is likely to be a contentious point and may even be a little misleading given the general satisfaction with this book.
Death Sentence has an intriguing plot, unique characters, and Monty Nero is one heck of a writer. The dialogue is always pitch-perfect for each individual personality. Given the short time we’ve had to get to know these characters, it’s great to have a character voice that can just as easily provide insight into their background just with the language they use. After finishing up this initial series, however, it felt like it was tough to actually care about the outcome of the story. This feeling was somewhat confusing given that the book was overall a decent read.
The latest installment featured a fairly tidy wrap-up that we’ve all seen coming. The moments when Verity smashes the antagonist were the most satisfying in the issue; finally a chance for this pretentious dick to get his just desserts! Other moments felt repetitive, like a rehash of previous issues. The many atrocities committed throughout the course of this book were definitely effective though, provoking a sincere reaction of shock and utter contempt for the villain.
Mike Dowling’s artwork has just gotten better over the course of this series. Each issue looks better than the last, and this remains the case with Death Sentence #6. In particular, the colors are much more magnificent than previous installments. There is a much more prominent use of the main characters’ G+ powers throughout issue #6 which really allows this visual aspect to shine. The characters and backgrounds also feature a seemingly greater depth of detail with cleaner line work. The deeper coloring this month really helps all of this. Again, Dowling shows he is a master of character facial expressions which further convey the emotion underlying each scene. Overall, this issue let the artist’s creativity run wild in a way which wouldn’t have been quite as suitable in previous installments. This was definitely a great looking book!
As a whole, personal feelings about Death Sentence tend toward the positive. The plot was very interesting and handled in a mature, often intelligent manner. The pacing felt a bit lacking in places, but this final installment of the initial run made up for the relative lack of high-thrills action. It will be interesting to see where this series goes in the future now that things have peaked.