Grifter #1 was one of the first comics that I read. I picked it up because I wanted to read about a character I had never heard about. I originally fell in love with the series, but lately there has been a lack of character development and seeing the same ethereal baddies in every issue has become stale. Midnighter from Stormwatch makes a cameo in this issue, but can Grifter #7 help revive this title?
Story: Nathan Edmondson
Pencils: Scott Clark
Inks: Dave Beaty
Colorist: Andrew Dalhouse
Letterer: Wes Abbott
Cover: Clark, Beaty & Dalhouse
Editor: Bobbie Chase
Publisher: DC Comics
Previously, in Grifter: In an attempt to save Gretchen from the Daemonites, Grifter was almost captured but in common “blow crap up” fashion, Grifter and Sophia escape somewhere over the Himalayas and Gretchen is taken by the Daemonites through a portal.
A CHANGE OF SCENERY
Familiar with voices beckoning him, Grifter leaves Sophia alone and continues his search for the newest voice in the Himalayas. I was really getting tired of the excess inking and the repetition of the ethereal Daemonites, which made the sight of the snow more than welcome. The artists did a wonderful job with the contrast and created beautiful wide shots and creative, aesthetically pleasing close-ups with their limited color palette. I’ve personally always loved the character art in Grifter and there was no let up with the cameo of Midnighter. Most of the issue covers the confrontation between Grifter and Midnighter which can create profile problems with character, but every angle was covered with finesse and precision and never pulled me out of the issue.
I’ve always had a minor affinity towards Grifter – the character and this issue continues to remind me why. He is clearly outclassed in the match-up, but still proves to be resourceful. I realize you can’t see the face of many heroes but the focus on detail and correlation between Grifter’s mask and hair, with the motion and intensity of the action, is executed nicely in this issue.
ONE BAD APPLE SPOILS THE BUNCH?
I had a teacher in high school who used to put duck stickers on good papers and poems and frog stickers on papers that “jumped out” at her. A classmate once asked why I never got a sticker when I had consistent A’s on my stories and poems. She responded, “Because I already expected that from him.” That’s how I feel about Grifter right now. The art style has a slight difference from some of the mainstream runs that brings about both praise and criticism, but I feel it is always great, especially on the detail and design of Grifter himself. Unfortunately, the character development of Grifter is always absent. The appearance of Midnighter was a sight for sore eyes, but he came and he went and we still learned nothing new about Grifter or his personality. This is unfortunate because I believe there is a lot to be learned about our hero. The creators have a great opportunity with this character and I hope they take the opening soon before the comic becomes really
As I mentioned in my first review I am a comic n00b. More recently I’ve noticed that I should know more of what is going on in other comics to understand the series that I do read a little better, but right now my budget for my comic lineup is capped. This makes me sad, because I liked learning about who Midnighter is, but I won’t be able to really followup in Stormwatch. Most people I know who read comics are on a budget as well and I can see this as being a problem. The question the publishers will have to ask is if the risk of attempting to create a coherent and mingled universe is worth the risk of disappointing readers. On top of that, the last page indicates that we should check out for Superman #7 as well. Luckily, I already pick up Superman, but this may not be the case for everyone.
BOTTOM LINE: A CONSISTENT ROLLER COASTER…
The art? Well, it’s always great. The story? Well, pick one note and sing it over and over. Sometimes your voice cracks and sometimes you sing like an angel. As much as I liked about this issue I just couldn’t help but be disappointed that Grifter still is developing to his full potential. Midnighter may have been an air freshener for us, but in the end it’s still the same ride. Hopefully the story takes a turn for the better in #8 because I’m not quite ready to turn in my badge, but I am definitely on that brink. Grifter isn’t down for the count yet, and who knows, next month I may be telling everyone to pick up the series, but Grifter #7 sits in the middle of the road for me at 2.5 out of 5 stars.