Dark Horse Review: Manor Black #4 (Final Issue)

Manor Black 4

Review: Manor Black #4

Manor Black 4

 

[Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers]

Writers: Cullen Bunn, Brian Hurtt

Artist and Colors: Tyler Crook


Reviewed by: 
Tony Farina

 

 

 

Summary

Ari and Mr. Black do battle with the mummified monster who is trying to control Ari’s totem and magic in general. Our hapless police officer friend finds his way into the middle of the mayhem. It goes surprisingly better for him than I expected it to. There is a lot of magic battles and we see what a fire totem on the loose looks like. Then…The last page. Damn! This is the final book in the series, so I don’t want to say too much. Suffice to say that the Black family will have an awkward Thanksgiving dinner.

Manor Black 4

Positives

Manor Black #4 does the most work advancing the plot. That is a good thing because there have been a lot of loose ends and this is the last book of the series (or is it?).  That is not to say they are all resolved here. Did I mention the last page? Damn! Seriously. What an excellent last page of a series.

There are a lot of puns in this issue. I like puns. You may not. See below

Tyler Crook has just done a bang up job here. I have enjoyed his work a lot and I think this issue, where there is so much action, he really shines. The color contrast has been outstanding as one can see from the page below. The way he plays with our eyes and our focus is so delightful. I never know where to look, so I just spend a lot of time looking at all of it.

Manor Black 4

Negatives

Did I mention the last page of Manor Black #4? Yes? Well, It is amazing. It is also painful because, it clearly means this isn’t the end. That is going to anger a lot of readers. Richardson and his band of merry makers over at Dark Horse like to take risks. This is a big one.

There are a lot of puns in this issue. OK. I know I repeated that, but puns are not for everyone so they fall under good and bad. I like them when they work. They don’t always work here.

Verdict

Manor Black is a good start to a bigger universe. There are tons of magical possibilities beyond just that last page’s explosive kick in the pants (Yes I know I mixed my metaphors). I am not sure it did itself justice by ending the way it did. I mean, that ending was the best ending of all four books and it is the ACTUAL ending. Maybe the idea is to give us a lot of unanswered questions that will make us by the TBP and then we will see Manor Black 2 in 2020. We can only hope. Ari was finally becoming a fully developed character. Roman was really interesting. The whole Black Family is a mess and I would be keen to read more on that.

 

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Tony Farina

I am a writing professor at Siena Heights University. I have been reading comics for over 30 years. The first comic I bought was in 1984. Green Lantern 176. First appearance of the Demolition Team. Favorite Robin: Tim Drake Favorite Green Lantern: Jessica Cruz Favorite Flash: Barry Allen Favorite Batgirl: Barbara Gordon Favorite Nightwing outfit: Disco Favorite Batman: Duh, There can be only one