Monday, June 20, 2022

Comics Review: "KING SPAWN #11" - It's Hard Out Here for a Hellspawn Pimp

IMAGE COMICS/Todd McFarlane Producions

STORY: Sean Lewis with Todd McFarlane
ART: Javi Fernandez
COLOR: FCO Plascencia
LETTERS: Andworld Design
EDITOR-in-CHIEF: Thomas Healy
COVER:  Francesco Mattina
28pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (June 2022)

Rated: “T/ Teen”

Spawn created by Todd McFarlane

Spawn is a superhero/antihero character that stars in the long-running comic book series, Spawn.  Created by writer-artist Todd McFarlane, Spawn first appeared in Spawn #1 (cover dated: May 1992).

Spawn was Albert Francis “Al” Simmons.  A career military man who becomes a highly capable assassin and dies a violent death.  He makes a deal with the devil, Malebolgia, in order to return to the living realm to see his wife one last time.  However, Al returns with almost no memories accept that his name is Al Simmons, and he learns that he is now a “Hellspawn” in service of Malebolgia.  Rebelling, Al Simmons, now “Spawn,” finds a new purpose in stopping evil.

King Spawn is one of three recently launched comic book series that join the original series to form the “Spawn Universe.”  This series is written by Sean Lewis with Todd McFarlane; drawn by Javi Fernandez with Thomas Nachlik ; colored by FCO Plascencia; lettered by Andworld Design.  King Spawn finds Spawn battling the members of a dark conspiracy that wants to force him to accept his crown and the “Godthrone.”

King Spawn #11 opens with Spawn beating the crap out of a member of the Court of Priests.  The demon, Tremor, however, isn't Spawn's only target, but some of his targets will fight back.  Spawn is on the hunt for the Court of Priests, and maybe they expected it.  Meanwhile, Al Simmons/Spawn's oldest friend, Terry Fitzgerald, is on a mission of his own, one that may actually make things worse!

THE LOWDOWN:  King Spawn insists on being the best Spawn spin-off comic book to date, and I'm too scared of it to argue otherwise.  As I have written several times, this hybrid of dark fantasy, the supernatural, and superheroes never disappoints.

I love that writer Sean Lewis is just a little too aggressive because that feels like the right thing for the lead character.  This is a Spawn comic book, after all, and the character has often seethed with and anger, discontent, and rage.  Besides, Lewis has been offering a nice balance of character drama with Terry Fitzgerald.  He is the human side, vulnerable, but determined, a counter to the rage.

Once again, Javi Fernandez turns in some of best work.  It's the eleventh issue, for Hell's sake, but Javi is still offering crazy new compositions and invigorating graphics.  Fernandez balances the grim determination of Terry Fitzgerald with the hurricane of violence that is Spawn.  I loved how Javi drew Spawn pounding Tremor into crap in page after page of widescreen comics storytelling.

I highly recommend King Spawn.  To borrow a phrase from Joe Simmons of the Madea movies, King Spawn is some of that “good-good,” although Joe is talking about narcotics...

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Spawn will want to read King Spawn.

[This comic book includes “Spawning Ground Presents:” featuring “Fan Art Sketch Covers”.]


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

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