Review – Prometheus: Fire and Stone #4 (of 4) (Dark Horse)
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Writer: Paul Tobin
Artist: Juan Ferreyra
Release Date: 10th December 2014
If you’re struggling as much as I am to keep track of things during the erratic release schedule of Dark Horse’s Fire and Stone event (wait, isn’t that guy dead already?), then allow me to remind you of just where we stand going into the final issue of the Prometheus arc. In an act of ultimate dickery, Galgo has left the remaining Geryon crew stranded on the surface of LV-223 to save his own ass. To further compound matters, existential mutated synthetic death machine Elden has given the rampaging Xenomorph swarm access to the terrified survivors aboard the Geryon. Oh, and there’s an Engineer wandering around the surface of the planet, planning God knows what.
Tobin and Ferreyra have done a simply outstanding job on this series, managing to tie their story into the overarching narrative and the existing movie canon while still managing to tell a compelling, exciting story. This final issue exemplifies precisely what makes this creative partnership so special; Tobin dreams up sickening, gut-wrenching situations and Ferreyra brings them to life in eye-watering detail. Simple. The Geryon crew’s last desperate surge for survival is tinged with a sense of futility, but as always, Tobin still manages to draw us in and make us actually care about what happens to these people. From the very beginning, we’ve been invested in their plight. We pump our fists when they seem to score a victory, no matter how slight, then gasp in horror as that victory is cruelly snatched away;. This has been the pattern for the arc so far, and it’s one which works to absolute perfection in this final instalment.
It also bears mentioning that this issue also features one of the best Juan Ferreyra splash pages I think I’ve ever seen. Which, if you’ve been monitoring the man-crush I have on the work of the Argentinian artist over the last couple of years, is most definitely saying something. Yeah.
To give you an idea of where this arc stands in terms of the ‘bigger picture’, here’s a comparison for you; if the Fire and Stone event is Star Wars, then the Prometheus arc is The Empire Strikes Back. Yes, there are some incredible mind-melting moments and action set pieces, but when the dust has finally settled, it’s all a bit of a downer, really. There are no happy endings here – something we should probably already have managed to gleam from the subsequent AvP and Predator series’, and while there is still a brief glimmer of hope for later down the line, right now, our human protagonists are looking at a heavy, painful loss.
Prometheus is the first arc to wrap up from the Fire and Stone event, and it does so in style, going out in a blaze of glory and featuring some truly jaw-dropping moments or horror and gore. The release schedule continues to be Fire and Stone’s lone undoing (well, along with the mutated Predathing), forcing us to jump around from story to story, diminishing the effect of several of the reveals and moments along the way. However, when you sit down and read this arc in one uninterrupted sitting, you can’t help but realise just how special it truly is. Completely undaunted by the overloaded, plot hold-ridden and ultimately confusing Prometheus movie, this creative team have managed to spin off a brand new story that manages to retain some of the positives from the film but add so much more in terms of excitement, drama and – well – actually having it make sense. Ideally, I’d love to live in a world where Paul Tobin and Juan Ferreyra created every comic on the shelves, but for the time being, this is more than enough to keep me satisfied.
Don’t forget to check out our Dark Horse: Fire & Stone Review and Interview Hub for all of our coverage of this event in one place.
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The writer of this piece was: Craig Neilson (aka Ceej)
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