John Carpenter's Asylum #4 (Storm King, no cover date. Copyright 2013 even though issue wasn't released until February 12, 2014.)
Writers: Bruce Jones with Sandy King and Trent Olsen
Artist: Leonardo Manco
Colorist: Kinsun Loh
Evil is real and it is everywhere. Ancient evils, forgotten evils. Why, even the fate of this very issue was halted by evil. This issue was scheduled for release the day before Thanksgiving, but was derailed by Hurricane Haiyan and the resulting health problems with colorist Kinsun Loh. Then the holidays, which caused the printer and Diamond Comics Distributors to dally. Then the flipping Polar Vortex, which snarled many things in America. Finally, finally, I got the issue in my hands this week. To use an old Alan Moore-ism, no one in five years' time will care that issue 4 was three months late, they will only care if issue 4 was good. And it is.
The battle between good and evil continues to heat up, with Father Leone seemingly the only one even remotely prepared to do battle with it. As glimpses of Hell creep into the mind of Father Beckett you can almost feel the heat, as his possession grows more complete. This series remains a great read, and I only hope that I won't have to wait three months until the next issue.
There is an almost cinematic quality to the framing in many of the scenes in this issue, courtesy of artist Leonardo Manco. You can almost feel the whiplash edits and imagine a nanosecond camera angle change, something all the more impressive when you consider that these are static images on a page. I really do feel that comic books are the ultimate storytelling medium. You have the visuals of a movie combined with the depth of a book. I might be what you would call biased. Your mileage may vary.
Why can tiny Storm King sell a comic for $3.99 with heavy duty paper and an even heavier cover with no advertisements while Marvel and DC sell comics with cheaper paper (and...shudder...self covers) and the comic being one third ads for the same price? I know that I'd rather drop four bucks on this than anything either one are doing these days.
Junk Food For Thought rating: 5 out of 5.