[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Tim Seeley
Artists: Stephen Molnar, Quinton Winter
Polly Peachpit and her husband Charlie Chokecherry are locked in a battle over baby Omari. Melba Li is caught, a prisoner to the Fraidy Cat. And Agent Crockett is tripping hard on PCP. All in all, a pretty busy issue.
Featuring the most action out of the issues so far, Imaginary Fiends throws a lot at the reader this month. Polly and Charlie have a full scale, action packed fight that I thought would be the finale of the series. It’s this issue that lets me know I have no idea where this is going, and I love it. There really isn’t a dull moment among the pages. The way the issue is broke into three separate stories means the plot is always advancing. If we’re not with Melba then we’re with Crockett and if not with either of them then with Polly, who Seeley somehow manages to get readers to feel for.
Once terrifying (and still pretty scary to be honest) Polly Peachpit shines in this issue as an alternative hero. Attempting to save a baby, not because she’s virtuous by any means. Because she needs the baby’s fear to prolong her life and give her power. It’s a really interesting dynamic. Giving Polly basically her own little story shows readers how significant she is. An imaginary third member of the FBI trio.
Really all three mini stories are their own positives. Melba gets the least development as Polly and Crockett are given a great deal. We learn more about both, Polly being the one left in readers’ minds thanks to a fantastic splash page at the end. The artwork is still as great as ever. It’s expected at this stage. The colouring does stand out this month. There’s a large mix of hues and it’s noticeable without making the reader feel dumb. Crockett has blue tones with his underwater scenes, Polly the reds of blood and violence, leaving Melba with the yellow of fear. It’s subtle and I appreciate things like this in comics.
Not much to say here. The narration makes the series really unique but this month it ends abruptly rather than blends into the story like usually. This just makes the narration feel like a gimmick instead of an organic part of the story. It’s only noticeable because the story really kicks off as soon as the narration ends this issue.
On top of that having three mini stories each have their own cliff-hanger is a little cheap. The issue is great on its own and Seeley shouldn’t have to resort to ‘tricks’ to convince readers to stay on board. Agent Crockett’s story fairs the worst with his cliff-hanger feeling more like the issue just ends before his story is allowed to.
Another truly fantastic issue by Seeley and Molnar. With more action than usual there’s something for just about everyone (of a certain age) in this issue. Horror, action, violence and a little comedy. This looks to be the issue that signals a change in the Imaginary Fiends story, and readers should definitely keep up.