Review: LUCIFER #9
[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]
Writer: Dan Watters
Artists: Kelley Jones
Colors: Chris O’Halloran
Letters: Steve Wands
Reviewed by: Seth Singleton
There are only two stories in the world. A stranger comes to town or someone goes on a trip. In Lucifer #9, “The Gastronomy Lesson” the forbidden son of the Morningstar, Caliban, comes to the home of Lord Fowler and takes his terrified host on a journey into what it means to truly be a hunter.
When last we saw Caliban he had left his mother Sycorax. Her choice to honor the international coven of witches during her final hours on earth, made him angry and feel unwanted. He was then tempted by the heavenly host with an offer to betray the whereabouts of his father Lucifer for a chance at an eternal life in paradise. We still don’t know what
Caliban is a crafty character. He is meticulous and malicious. When he first appears at the home of Lord Fowler he demeans the hunter who purchased a demon then insinuates that the missing Lady Fowler fell victim to foul play. He knows the demon inside is only able to repeat the word Lucifer.
Caliban is only seeking answers. When he is done Lord Fowler can have his trophy, and if Caliban fails he will surrender to the master of the house.
I love when Fowler returns and Caliban says that he has prepared a full course meal featuring all of the best parts of the captured demon. The meal begins with an appetizer of demon tartar with a scale crackling.
Throughout it all, Caliban describes the emotions that are revealed in the flavor of the demon flesh. The appetizer is tough from fear, the skin burned by the fires of hell, and the thymus gland in the sweetbreads is mature from stewing in its own putrescence.
I enjoyed a great twist when Caliban uncovers a splinter of timber made from Hell’s Wood of Suicides where harpies tear at the bark of the trees which are the souls of the damned who took their own lives. The sliver of wood warns Caliban that the trees are his fate.
Three different times he took his own life. Caliban argues that it is not true because he did not die. Then the trees tell him that he died both times. It was his father Lucifer who refused to accept his soul and allowed him to return to the mortal plane. When Caliban does finally die, he will suffer the same of all who are cursed to Hell’s Wood.
When you dance with the devil, the devil doesn’t change, the devil changes you. When he has finished eating the meal prepared by Caliban, Lord Fowler realizes he has changed into a monstrosity worse than the one Caliban just served them. Caliban rises to leave and promises to leave the door open for the hounds.
My only complaint for Lucifer #9 is that it was too short. When it was done I still wanted more. Honestly, there are worse problems to have.
I thought this was a great in the larger story that is developing to introduce what motivates Caliban. He is an impressive detective and cook and his patience is something that would make his father Lucifer proud. Caliban is about to play a significant part of the upcoming story. Understanding how he thinks will make clear the choices he will soon have to make regarding the fate of his mother, his father, and ultimately his own.