Review: Anchor #3

by

AnchorPICON.jpg

Clem’s mission is sidetracked when he is taken into custody by Col. McBride of Darpa. Subjected to test beyond the limits of a normal man, will Clem be ready to combat a new threat when it arises, or will he have to rely on one of his companions for assistance?

AnchorCOVER.jpgTitle: Anchor #3
Written by: Phil Hester
Art by: Brian Churilla
Colors by: Matthew Wilson
Cover A: Brian Churilla, Matthew Wilson
Cover B: Dan Brenton, Martin Thomas

In our previous issues, the team of Hester and Churilla introduced us to Anchor aka Clem, a mystical warrior who is currently roaming the globe determined to defeated the mystical beasts known as the Furies. Anchor is also the guardian of a dimensional gate in hell, keeping the demonic hordes at bay. Existing in two places at once, Clem has found allies in not only a relief volunteer named Hoffie, but in the unlikely form of a young boy ghost named Matthew, victim of one of the Furies.

After defeating the Fury of Loch Lomond last issue, Clem bit into the defeated creature’s heart to learn more of his memory. While he was in his sleep state, he and Hoffie where apprehended by Col. McBride and taken to a secret installation of Darpa Tacticle. For over a week, Clem has been bombarded with test designed to measure his powers and abilities. But while they have plenty of information on his defensive abilities, they have almost none on his offensive powers. It seems that no matter what the scientists and guards do to him, Clem keeps a pleasant demeanor toward them. After being shocked by lighting guns (which have no effect) Col. McBride orders his men to affix their bayonets and attack Clem hand to hand. Ironically, they cannot even get close enough to their target him to damage him, despite his refusal to fight back against what ever is thrown at him.  After several minutes of such fruitless efforts, Clem even reaches out a hand to help one of the soldiers up after they where thrown back. As the guards shackle Clem and prepare to take him back to his cell, he tells them that his powers where not meant to be used against men and that they have nothing to fear from him. We also find that, in addition to his other abilities, Clem does not need nourishment from the hands of men, as The Almighty provides for him.

Meanwhile, Col. McBride finds Hoffie in the “prison” library. McBride tells her that she is not a prisoner, and that they are only doing their duty by making sure that he was not exposed to any harmful energies or toxins while she has been associated with him. Also, tells her he hopes that the current situation has not derailed her progress toward her PhD in History. Then McBride dangles the bait in front of her: If she where to help them get a reading of The Anchor’s abilities, then they would be able to resolve the whole situation much quicker. Hoffie refuses, and is taken way by soldiers. But remember, she isn’t a prisoner.

Back in his cell, Clem is visited by the ghost of the young boy Matthew, whom he calls “Little Saint.” Apparently he was left behind when the truck with Clem and Hoffie left, and it took him a little while to figure out how to work his way back to them.  During their conversation, Matthew tells Clem that he thinks Hoffie might be in danger. It seems that he overheard McBride saying that they may be getting ready to put Hoffie in danger to see if that will get Clem to show them his strength. Well, McBride, careful what you wish for, because you’ve just motivated the Anchor! Breaking free of his chains, he tears his way through the base until he finds McBride. The exchange of the issue happens when The Anchor slams McBride against the wall…

MCBRIDE: What happened to your vow not to harm your fellow man?
ANCHOR: Vows break…as easily as men’s necks.

All I got to say is, Damn Cool, one of my favorite lines of the year! The scientist from earlier in the issue and Hoffie then enter through the giant hole in the wall just as McBride receives a phone call letting him know that another of the Furies has appeared, this time in Rome. What can the Anchor do against a beast that hides behind innocent souls? It looks like it is time to get moving, and by the end of the issue, we will see Vatican City in peril, one of Clem’s companions move on, and we see the return of the creepy-mummy-cossack guy.

Again, we get a great story from Phil Hester and Brian Churilla. And again, I am impressed with the story telling. Instead of trying to detail EVERY SINGLE SECOND of the story, they have given the information to the reader in other ways.  It’s nice to read a story that is moving along nicely while still giving only the information we need at that time. The characters are growing. It’s a nice change from the current trend of storytelling, and seems much more natural and flowing. Also, you find yourself really liking (or disliking) the characters based on their actions, not on a pre-conceived, stereo-type notion.

So, to recap, we got a great little series with wonderful writing, character development, and excellent art. And another addition that I am pleased with is the letter page. Yes, this book actually has an honest to goodness letter page in it, Martyr’s Mailbox. There are some nice little insights to be found in it, and I enjoyed reading other readers thoughts on the book and hearing the creators’ responses.

Again, I am really pleased with this book, as it has introduced me to a genre that I had not really delved into before. If I had to pick a real issue with it, I would have to say that some of the art was a little bit looser this time around than in the second issue. But I still enjoyed it and had a wonderful time reading it. 4 out of 5 stars.

4stars.jpg