Review: Ghost #4

Publisher: Dark Horse

Writer: Kelly Sue DeConnick

Artist: Phil Noto

Release Date: March 13, 2013

With this issue, the first story arc of the Ghost revival comes to a conclusion. After sneaking into a costume ball, Elisa Cameron (Ghost) and her friends confront her killer, Chicago mayor Bobby Chambers, and his accomplices. Cutting the modern-day action are flashbacks to the night Ghost died.  Somewhat refreshing is the ending. It does not wrap things up neatly. It leaves some things unresolved if the writer comes back to this world.

This is a wonderfully fresh take on a 20-year-old character. This comic shows the correct way to do a reboot. Instead of continuing the old storyline, this volume goes in a new direction. It keeps the important parts of the story, discards the rest, and molds the book into a wonderful narrative. Ghost is no longer a science fiction creation. She is now a more metaphysical one. Her mission gets a reboot as well. Instead of some nebulous agenda, she has a clear goal. Although the approach might have critics, Kelly Sue DeConnick did a good job with bringing the character to the 21st century.

Although I normally do not notice artwork, this time I did. Phil Noto is an amazing artist. His characters feel alive. More importantly, they can emote. In other comics I would have trouble figuring out how the characters are feeling because their faces do not change. With Ghost, I do not have that kind of trouble. I know exactly what each character is thinking and how they say each line. It is rare for an artist to do that and I appreciate Noto’s artwork even more.

The only criticism I have is that it feels a bit padded. Although an easier read than many other comics I’ve read lately, it still has moments where it slows down. A lot of the flash back scenes run a little longer than they should, especially the flashback to the ball 5 years ago. Had it been a little more streamlined, it would have been a perfect comic. It’s a great comic, but not perfect.

Final Verdict: Positive.

As a long time fan of Ghost, I admit that I like this take on the character. She feels like the Ghost I knew as a teenager, but different at the same time.  Her reboot honors the original, but goes in a new direction. It is a must read for fans of the character and worth it when it’s collected in trade.

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About the author

Joseph Furguson

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