What has Chet Charles been doing for all these years in the Otherworld, and what is going to happen to his company? Find out in By Night #11!
Writer: John Allison
Artist: Christine Larsen
Colorist: Sarah Stern
Letterer: Jim Campbell
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: May 8, 2019
Previously in By Night: Jane, Heather, and Gardt squeeze back through the portal to the Otherworld to get footage for their documentary…and to find Chet Charles. Gardt is willing to guide them again, all the way to Mount Eucchurus, where they do meet Chet. Back in our world, Chip meets with Joan, the lawyer for the CharlesCo Trust. He isn’t happy with the way they’ve handled the company’s assets, but her proposal surprises him – she wants him to join the Trust. They want the CharlesCo property for their own business venture, but Dr. Gramercy (also a Trust member) won’t go along unless they can give him the Eidolon. What is he going to do?
IS THERE A FUTURE FOR CHARLESCO?
As By Night #11 opens, Barney is standing guard by the Eidolon. It’s been a quiet night, but he’s going to be prepared for anything.
In the Otherworld, Chet takes Gardt and the girls through Mount Eucchurus, starting with a mine cart ride (as Heather aptly quotes from Willy Wonka). A door leading out from the mountain goes to a small cabin that Chet apparently built for himself. Jane is curious – he had come through to find the men from the Pentagon. So, what happened to them? He says that he came through and had no clue where to find them. He also felt guilty enough that he could not go back. So he stayed and tried to continue his work.
Then, in a bit of a twist, we find out that Chet Charles has a love story. Isher, the warrior woman, rescued him from drowning, and they fell in love. (Jane and Heather do wonder if this was real or not.) Shortly thereafter, the remains of General Jackson and his men are discovered, and the local Orcs accuse Chet of leading an invasion. He was sentenced to Mount Eucchurus, but Isher came and rescued him from his trial. They ran, intending to come back to Earth, when Mount Eucchurus found them and Isher gave her life for Chet and was turned to stone. (She is the statue the girls found last issue.)
This is when Chet Charles took his revenge by hollowing out Mount Eucchurus and taking over for it himself. He put the Wolfman in charge of everyone, and has basically been causing chaos throughout the Otherworld. He also has a way to open a portal back to Earth, and agrees to go back, insisting that Gardt needs to stay. As they leave, Klay and Gardt quickly decide they need to go talk to the Wolfman.
The CharlesCo Trust meeting is not making significant progress. Dr. Gramercy knows Chip has the Eidolon. Chip refuses to hand it over. Heather’s arrival home, and a quick phone call to her dad, change things. Chet has to get to that meeting. Jane and Heather realize they’re coming to the end of this adventure, although the hard work of editing their footage still lies ahead. Downtown, Tabitha (the Ghost Lady) sees Chet as he walks down the street (and he spots her) as he sees how much things have changed and how dead downtown now is.
Chet makes it to the meeting on time. Joan and Blake are skeptical, but Dr. Gramercy identifies him as Chet. Chip agrees to hand the Eidolon over to Dr. Gramercy. And after the meeting, Chet and Gramercy meet to discuss the Eidolon and how Chet wants to use it to destroy the Otherworld. But meanwhile, in the Otherworld, Gardt has reached the Wolfman.
TYING UP LOOSE ENDS
One of the things I really like about By Night #11 is how so many things that were set out early on are coming around again. I also like the artistic depiction of a town that is on the one hand so normal, but on the other hand has people running around doing strange things. The creative team has done a good job depicting a town that is dying due to losing its main industry, but also finding some humor in the various oddities in the people who are hanging on.
Chet’s flashback is short, considering how much it has to cover. The coloring is a bit different with a brighter and broader color palette which does a nice job setting it apart. Considering the seriousness of this issue, the touches of humor are a welcome relief, such as when the girls return and go back to Barney. He has armored himself in whatever (mostly sports equipment) he could find, and grabbed a broom as a weapon.
BOTTOM LINE: TENSE AND ODDLY EMPTY
For as wild an adventure as we have in By Night #11, as the story draws to a close, it feels as though endings for people may feel a bit hollow. Not that this is a bad thing – this is a story deeply rooted in a dying town. Not everyone may get a happy ending. But it does leave a nice bit of tension – is anyone going to get what they wanted, or expected out of this venture? It isn’t just a crazy romp in another dimension; it’s a thoughtful exploration of actions and consequences.
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By Night #11
It isn’t just a crazy romp in another dimension; it’s a thoughtful exploration of actions and consequences.