1st Impressions: SHADOWMAN # 14

Written by Peter Milligan
Art by Roberto De La Torre & David Baron
Valiant Comics

                We continue this road that Punk Mambo, the Abettors and Milligan has brought us down to. We get some more back story: some we know, some we didn’t. As Jack doubts himself while Alyssa believes in him.
                Jack ends up having an internal struggle with him, the Loa and … another guest. Alyssa holds fast that Jack can beat the influence of the Loa. But as the story goes on, it does not look like Jack is in control at all.
                De La Torre and Baron illustrate a dark, macabre book that is full of horror, emotion and despair. The panel composition is solid. The art is solid and full of De La Torre’s sketchy, thick style. De La Torre gives us some frightening and powerful visuals, from Jack’s emotion from seeing his past to Alyssa trying to talk to Jack to the horror of more people seemingly beaten up and/or dead.
                The colors give a great feel and set mood from scene to scene set to Baron. Even the lighter scenes were impactful with its colors and good composition.  A good job by this art team.
                Milligan does a lot of construction on top of what was there this issue and most of it seems to fit. Building upon last issue, Milligan takes readers and Jack into a dark journey of self discovery that is frightening, suspenseful and eye opening. Milligan adds some new layers to Jack this issue and seem more natural this time than they did last issue. The mythology that this issue began to reveal is very interesting and more of Punk Mambo, who continues to be more and more interesting as the book goes.
                Milligan paces the issue extremely well. With the addition of the Abettors and more history on previous Shadowmen, there is a good foundation here. The dialogue seemed okay but I will admit … Alyssa seemed a bit odd. The one idea of what she wanted to do just felt a little out of character for her. I can understand the thought process behind it but just didn’t feel right. That and the surprise at the end of the issue just felt out there, to me. Still, well written by Milligan.


                This issue was better than the last. The new direction is gaining steam and is overall interesting. Yet, there are a few things that just don’t fit with the way certain characters acted before. Yet, the story is building speed with a good amount of tension and emotion. I still am NOT cool with the ending but the art is solid.

                I give Shadowman # 14 a 7.5 out of 10. There is still a ways to go but good.