Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Frank J. Barbiere
Artist: Garry Brown
Release Date: 30th October 2013
It’s often difficult to try and keep abreast of every new comic that comes out, especially when there are so many potentially mouth-watering titles hitting the shelves every week. Thankfully, one of the benefits of reviewing titles for BCP is that I’m finding myself continually exposed to comics I’d previously not have had a chance to read, and – more often than not – this is yielding some fairly impressive results.
Five Ghosts was a title I’d only head of in passing, and to be honest, the premise – treasure hunter slash thief Fabian Gray finding himself possessed by five literary ghosts (Sherlock Holmes, Robin Hood etc.) – seemed a little hokey to me. However, after picking up the latest issue in what was initially planned as a five-issue series, I can now gladly admit that I was completely wrong about this book.
Barbiere’s writing is remarkably restrained, and the ghosts themselves and the abilities they bestow upon Fabian are used extremely sparingly. This is an epic, sprawling adventure tale, and this issue takes us all the way to Japan where Fabian finds himself facing his past in a story featuring honour, magic, demons and betrayal. Barbiere adopts a measured approach to the dialogue, letting the brilliant visuals take centre stage in telling the story, and in that respect Garry Brown [The Massive, Dark Matter] is perfectly suited to this title with his beautifully inked, inherently cinematic style.
In fact, ‘cinematic’ would be the best word to describe this comic as a whole. While there isn’t a tremendous sense of depth (in this issue, at least), Fabian Gray is an undoubtedly intriguing protagonist, and the title has a sense of swashbuckling grandeur to it that I absolutely loved. This is definitely a title that I’m going to be adding to the reading list in the future, and this issue serves as a terrific jumping-on point for the curious.
The writer of this piece was: Craig Neilson (aka Ceej)
Article Archive: Ceej Says