With the world thrown into chaos, it’s up to the last human on Earth to find Kon and put magic in it’s place. But when you are deep in the jungle, with a charming druid, things just might get steamy.

This issue arrives January 18, 2012, so if you take the jump, be warned there are spoilers ahead…

CHARISMAGIC #4
Writer: Vince Hernandez
Illustrator: Khary Randolph
Colorist: Emilio Lopez
Letterer: Josh Reed
Editor: Frank Mastromauro
Publisher: Apsen Comics
Cover Price: $2.99

Previously in Charismagic: The evil wizard Samsun, along with a coven of witches, have taken over Kon’s castle and trapped the wizard supreme. If Hank, Sudana, and Sparkles can’t find the castle, and free the wizard, Hank’s best friend Hector, and girlfriend Alle (not to mention the rest of the human population) are gonna die.

SPARKLES MEET DALGO

Having arrived in Costa Rica, Hank, Sudana, and Sparkles (she’s a talking magical cat) are too late to warn, or protect, Kon from Samsun’s wrath. The trio only learn of this while traipsing through the jungle and meet Dalgo, Kon’s panther protector, who informs the trio of the events that took place in the opening pages of the issue. Meanwhile, in the Void, Hector and Alle meet the big wizard of the realm, who says he will help them if they can help free him from the Void. Though he can only open a communications portal, and Sudana’s powers aren’t strong enough to open a gateway from Earth-side, Hank’s powers might be the key to everyone’s salvation.

This issue is certainly not a jumping on point, as the story is very deep into the action. Fortunately, I did have access to the first three issues of the series, and reading them all in a row, makes for an enjoyable tale of good magic versus evil magic, with the fate of humanity caught in the middle. Vince Hernandez has done a great job of giving readers just enough backstory on the history of magic in this world to keep you engaged. Though we are only four issues in, the world feels fleshed out, even if we don’t know everything about all the magical powers and power structure of the various types of magicians.

The one problem I do have is the number of characters that are introduced with very little information about the character, or even the requisite number of repeated name drops needed to embed the character into the reader’s mind. The only other quibble I have is that Hank’s destiny is foreshadowed about as subtly as a sledgehammer through a glass window, which makes Hank appear to be the odd one out, as everyone else knows he has to make the sacrifice.

DOES EVERY PUBLISHER HAVE A HOUSE STYLE?

For smaller publishers, it seems they have a house style, and Aspen Comics is one that certainly feels like there is a consistent style running throughout each title. Even though there is no way humans can have super small waists and long torsos, I personally like the art in this issue. Khary Randolph makes every character unique, and unlike some titles I’ve read recently, there is never a moment where readers would mistake one character for another.

The coloring is superb. I’m going to hazard a guess this is all done digitally as there are moments where the panel looks like it was lifted from an animated film, and the lighting through the jungle trees is breathtaking.

BOTTOM LINE: WORTH IT IF YOU CAN GET THE BACK ISSUES

Lately it seems I’ve been super happy with everything I’ve read, but I can’t help it – I really liked everything I’ve read. Charismagic may seem like another T&A title with girls who turn into demons, and guys who seem a bit too toned, that’s not the case here. This is a fascinating little story, that hits all the beats, and though this particular issue is predictable in a lot of ways, it is quite entertaining. If you haven’t read this series before, and if you can find the previous three, Charismagic #4 is worth checking out, earning 3.5 Stars out of 5.

Rating: ★★★½☆

The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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