Publisher: DC Comics
Writer: Ray Fawkes
Artist: Juan Ferreyra
Release Date: 24th June, 2015
After a tense, horror-filled opening arc which featured artwork from the incomparable Ben Templesmith, DC’s Gotham by Midnight continues its impressive run here with the utterly sublime Juan Ferreyra being handed the artistic reigns. Excuse me for a moment while I mop up some of this drool. Okay, moving on…
With the “Midnight Shift” forced to come to terms with the losses they suffered at the end of issue five, this chapter serves as an almost stand-alone ‘monster of the week’ type tale, allowing us to gain a greater understanding of where the individual team members are at, emotionally. The case itself is intriguing enough, with a haunted office masking a hidden injustice, and writer Ray Fawkes’ dialogue and pacing remains impeccable throughout.
While some of the supporting characters aren’t quite as well developed as they perhaps could be, Jim Corrigan remains the cornerstone of the series, and his dry wit and matter-of-fact way of dealing with the unexplained gives this book a Hellblazer-esque charm that should cement its place on a lot of people’s pull lists so long as Fawkes remains at the helm.
The contrast in visual styles between Templesmith and Ferreyra – two of my absolute favourite artists of recent years – couldn’t be more noticeable, with Ben’s scratchy, chaotic panels and grotesquely exaggerated characters being replaced here by Juan’s slick, angular figures and crisply detailed monstrosities. It’s basically apples and oranges, and for such a die-hard fan of both creators, I’m absolutely thrilled to be given the opportunity to see them both provide their distinctive take on the rich world that Fawkes has created.
Overall, while this issue may not have quite as much of a ‘big picture’ feel to it as some of the issues in the previous arc did, Gotham by Midnight remains a fantastic horror procedural comic with sharp writing and some utterly sublime visuals. Plus, the revelation – and cameo – on the final page sets things up beautifully for the rest of this arc.
Proof, if proof were needed, that ‘big two’ comics can still retain that edgy, indie feel – in the right hands, of course. Definitely one to pick up, assuming you’re not already doing so.
[Click to Enlarge]