The ‘Devil is continues to fight for the innocent people of Winslow House, but how can he fight a being which can change his very reality? Find out that and more in DEATH-DEFYING ‘DEVIL #3 from Dynamite Comics.
Writer: Gail Simone
Artist: Walter Geovani
Colorist: Adriano Augusto
Letterer: Simon Bowland
Editor: Kevin Ketner
Release Date: October 16th, 2019
Cover Price: $3.99
Previously in DEATH-DEFYING ‘DEVIL: After standing up to a group of thugs to save a young couple, the ‘Devil became entangled in the cause of protecting the people who reside in the Winslow House from the mysterious Mr. Donovan. After being beaten by one of Donovan’s followers, he discovers that the authorities have all abandoned the people who live in Winslow House. While escorting one of the residents on a trip to get groceries he is spurned into action, but ends up having a sport of seizure where he finds himself a masked man in the not so old west. It is during this experience the ‘Devil discovers that the men assaulting Winslow House, and most likely Mr. Donovan himself, are not of this realm, but are most possibly demons from some other realm. He escapes an old style lynching, but what comes next is anyone’s guess.
IF THE GOOD DIE YOUNG…
It seems every time Bart Hill, aka the Death-Defying ‘Devil, tries to help the people of Winslow House, he winds up recuperating on somebodies couch. After the adventure to the Wild West era silver-screen of last issue, he now awakens on the couch of sisters Marika and Tina Amberson. Marika is a pregnant artist and takes care of her “baby” sister Tina because their parents don’t agree with Tina’s being a lesbian. But even as Marika and Tina try their best to make the ‘Devil comfortable, he begins to go in and out of consciousness. As his eyes close on one reality, they open again in another.
This time, Bart finds himself not a virile young masked wester hero, but an old man who seems to be possibly at the end of his trail. He is in a home for the elderly, and while Tina is a nurse in the home, Marika is his doctor. He has awakened to find that they thought they had lost him, as he was barely breathing and has had a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) signed. One of the orderlies, a large man named Derke, seems to hold a great deal of concern for Bart’s well-being, but it is only a ruse. He actually takes pleasure in beating and bullying the elderly patients with whom he is supposed to care for. Once the doctor and nurse have left, he begins to take his frustrations out on Bart, who is of an age that he can barely fend for himself. The next day, while in a session with “Doctor” Marika, he tells her who he actually is, a hero who has been trapped in the current reality. Despite him drawing a likeness of his true masked face, she does not seem to recognize him or his truth. This leads him to being placed back under Derek’s supervision, this time during arts and crafts. Angered at the way Derek begins to treat the other people under his care, he takes his finger paints and creates an impromptu version of his regular mask, and proceeds to dispense justice as only a young crime-fighter trapped in an elderly body can. But it may all be for naught, as the new orderly arrives, and he is not as subtle as Derek. Will the ‘Devil escape this reality in time, or will he be trapped to the fate of the aged?
…THE ‘DEVIL MAY LIVE FOREVER!
As one of the many public domain heroes who have thrived under the guidance of Dynamite Entertainment, the Death-Defying ‘Devil is probably the most mysterious. Besides appearing in the Project: Superpowers series, it has been eleven years since he held his own title. Gail Simone (Seven Days, Birds of Prey) changes that as she brings the character back to a solo spotlight. Simone is a practically a grandmaster among comic book writers, but with this issue she seems to take a more subdued approach. We don’t get a lot of lead-up to this installment of the story, and there is not any real explanation to anyone who may have missed the first two issues. Simone jumps in and continues her narrative without remorse, leading to something of a confusing experience for first time readers. The lack of a “previously in…” section leaves you to figure out what is going on with no guidance. It is only in the final pages that you may be able to deduce what has come before. It feels very much like this is a situation of writing for the trade. That said, her writing of the character is strong throughout and the excitement of the situation goes a long way toward making up for any confusion. The artwork by Walter Geovani (Red Sonja, Prophecy) is engaging and action packed. With the colors of Adriano Augusto (Masks 2, Voltron: From the Ashes) the art team draw you in and will have you jumping for joy as they depict an elderly Bart Hill beating a bad guy with his walker!
BOTTOM LINE: GOOD AND TRIPPY
As a single issue, #3 of Death-Defying ‘Devil has some faults, but when taken as part of the whole story, it moves it along nicely. The little unicorn girl, Mika, opens up and reveals another level of mystery, all the while leaving you wanting to find out more about Mr. Donavan and his ill-intents. If you like it make sure you have or are hunting down the first two issues for maximum pleasure.
Death-Defying ‘Devil #3 has faults, but excellent dialogue and wonderful art make up for it.
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Death Defying Devil #3
Probably best taken in context with the previous two issues, DATH-DEFYING ‘DEVIL #3 never the less is solid and entertaining, making it work your money.