November 29, 2021

Gabbing Geek

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Comic Review: Revival Volume 8

The rural noir where some dead folks wouldn't stay dead finally comes to an end.

Hey, look!  I finished another one of those comic series that actually ended ages ago that I liked but only read sporadically!  Here I am with the eighth and final volume of the Image series Revival, a self-described “rural noir” where a small town in Wisconsin had a handful of recently deceased human residents suddenly come back to life and then find themselves unable to die…mostly.

But there was a central mystery at the center of it all and a lot of balls in the air.  Can writer Tim Seeley and artist Mike Norton stick the landing?  Well, I read the volume subtitled Stay Just a Little Bit Longer, and I do have an opinion.

At the center of Revival was the murder of Em Cypress, a college student having an affair with one of her professors.  She didn’t stay dead, but initially the only person who knew that was her older sister Dana, a deputy for the local sheriff, who was also the sisters’ father.  Dana decided she would solve her sister’s murder as Em not only discovered she was pregnant but also was clearly missing something as were many of the other Revived.  But the whole area, quarantined by the feds, was filled with oddballs and weirdos, many of them of a violent disposition, to say nothing of the sorts of problems that could only come when some people not only don’t stay dead but also don’t seem to stay sane.

Well, the final volume opens with the solution to the murder.  It makes sense who did it in a roundabout sort of way.  The killer’s motive was something that fit the character, and it was someone who had been hanging around on the outskirts of the story for one reason or another up until that point.  Plus, the character had always seemed to be one of the more harmless people hanging around town.  Like I said, that solution made sense, and I can’t really object to a reveal that I have gone painfully out of my way to avoid spoiling in any way, shape, or form.

But as for the rest of the book…well, maybe I should have gotten a hint at to how wacky this whole thing was going to get when the Amish ninjas showed up.

That, essentially, is the problem.  There are far too many plot lines here, and some of them seem to end abruptly.  Likewise, this last volume brought in a lot of spiritual/supernatural material that was a minor part of the narrative beforehand.  It was like everything got tossed into a blender and what came out was, well, this.  It was touching in places, confusing in others, and a bit of a disappointing after a strong start.  Mostly, it was just rushed and crowded.

7.5 out of 10 disposable militias for this last trade and 8 out of 10 literal lost souls for the series as a whole.

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