This is not the best Sook cover on this series. I mean, no it's not bad, but it's just too simple, and a little bit crowded. Plus it's slightly different from the original solicited version, Vandal Savage has been moved more towards the center, so the chalk outline is longer visible. Plus the giant 'SAVAGE' logo blocks out most of the prison. Though that logo is really cool. The scratchy patchwork really suits both the word AND the 'serial killer' theme of the story.
Bernard Chang is back on art duties, and as much as I'd like to complain, since I thought we'd be getting complete creative team changes every arc and not repeating so soon, it's pretty much impossible for me to say anything bad about having him back. The panel layouts might not be as wild as with Deadman, but the more grounded story wouldn't be suited for that. Instead the layouts are just extremely well done. The pacing is already great, but the panel layouts really enhance it, creating a perfect visual flow. And the facial expressions are just excellent.
OH MY GOD I JUST NOTICED THE TINY PEOPLE ON THE COVER. WOW. That's an awesome little detail. I take back some of my negative comments on the cover.
Kass Sage is definitely a character I'm interested in following for this story. She's a completely different 'Vandal Savage offspring' than Scandal Savage, and she really captures the whole mood of the story. It makes things feel like a great primetime action drama, a strong independent woman who doesn't take crap from anybody. But she's not really bitchy about it, plus we already have begun to dig deeper into her bountiful complexities.
The story has an extreme 'Silence of the Lambs' vibe to it, but with the added twist of the ridiculously dysfunctional father/daughter relationship in the mix. Vandal LOVES to point out subtle 'Freudian' bits of psychology to the life his daughter has been living since he was put away. Most of this issue is just the conversation between the two, but it never gets close to boring, the dialogue is riveting and full of depth.
In Conclusion: 5/5
It's ironic, the covers for the Challengers of the Unknown arc made me REALLY excited for that, only to be soundly disappointed; and the covers for Savage were less compelling, and the whole thing didn't seem to have as interesting a concept. Kass Sage and Vandal Savage? It seemed a little odd to be about people like that, but it's off to a PHENOMENAL start.