Comic Vine Review

18 Comments

Elektra #5 - Bloodlines: Part Five Review

5

Elektra finally comes face to face with the deadly Cape Crow. Does she have what it takes to bring down the infamous assassin?

The Good

Breathtaking. Stunning. Creative. Gorgeous. Immersive. All of these words don't even begin to give Michael Del Mundo's pages (and co-colorist Marco D'Alfonso) the amount of praise they deserve. There's a lot of talented art teams out there, but Del Mundo's work really is something special and leaves a lasting impression. The action is visceral and packed with intensity, the character work is expressive, the layouts and perspectives engage our eyes, and the attention dedicated to bringing all of the effects and environments to life is praiseworthy. As if that wasn't enough, there's a staggeringly impressive double page spread. The story beat in that moment is a predictable one, but these twisted and engrossing visuals make you forget that it's a pretty common plot device, pull you right into the moment and make it feel epic. That one is sure to keep your eyes busy for a fair amount of time.

ELEKTRA truly is a visual experience like no other, but thankfully, this is a book that'll stimulate your mind, too. Sure, there's a couple of tropes along the way and it doesn't really have that firm of a grip on my emotions just yet, but it's still an exciting and fast-paced adventure which delivers big time on both action and character. We've been waiting for the encounter with Black Manta Cape Crow (okay, the design is familiar but it's still seriously cool) and it definitely delivers. The brawl between the two is a frenetic blast and, as expected, the panels do a tremendous job making us experience the speed, viciousness and force behind every action. Of course, writer Haden Blackman gives it a little more weight by bringing us into Elektra's thoughts as she takes on this seemingly unstoppable assassin.

Aside from the thrilling melees and additional insight into a few characters, I love how this chapter offers an organic lead into the next arc. It's not just "Well, that was fun. Let's wait and see what Elektra's next journey will be!" It closes one door in a satisfying way and moves forward with all of the elements that deserve more focus. That last page absolutely hooked my interest. I mean, the book had it to begin with, but that's very exciting!

The Bad

Very, very minor art gripe: on the first page, a bullet grazes under Elektra's right eye and, based on that panel, it seemed to take a good amount of skin and blood with it. In the next panel, you can see that area is red, but in the following pages, the patch of red to signify the damage seems to only appear in some of the panels. Also, it was a little odd to have Elektra clarify that Crow's precise, not necessarily fast, and then have her later remark on his speed as if that's the key attribute in the fight.

The Verdict

Make room on your pull list for ELEKTRA because this is a book you really shouldn't miss. The action is fast-paced and jaw-dropping, the pages are loaded with absolutely beautiful and clever artwork, and the script never loosens its grip on your interest and successfully gives Elektra the amount of insight and depth she deserves. This latest chapter gives you all of the above and does an excellent job teasing what the next story arc will likely address. Seriously, be good to yourself and give ELEKTRA a shot. Honestly, you can have no interest in the character whatsoever and the solid writing and phenomenal visuals will turn you into a fan.

18 Comments
Posted by BigL

Fell in love with Mike del Mundo's covers for X-Men Legacy and when I found out he was doing art for Elektra I jumped on the series. His art truly is magnificent and this is one of the best Marvel books out, hope he's on art for the long haul

Posted by Fallschirmjager

Awesome book is awesome.

Posted by Teerack

This books is so good, but I have a hard time getting through it because I really can't stand this art.

Edited by Fallschirmjager

@teerack said:

This books is so good, but I have a hard time getting through it because I really can't stand this art.

I think you and I have opposite eyes, since I love this art and can't stand Samnee's.

Posted by StarBrand1

i like del mundo covers, but reading an ongoing with that style is so difficult.

Posted by dagmar_merrill

I don't really care for the writing but the art is fantastic

Posted by Teerack

@teerack said:

This books is so good, but I have a hard time getting through it because I really can't stand this art.

I think you and I have opposite eyes, since I love this art and can't stand Samnee's.

The art is good by itself. I would love some of this stuff up on my wall, but it doesn't feel like a comic book to me and I end up feeling like I'm reading a short story and keep getting bored.

Posted by MadeinBangladesh

I continue to comment on his amazing the art is. Blows everyone away.

Posted by WheatStalker

Just finished it. Need to take a walk, get some fresh air ... this book could be the most rewarding commitment to art and story I've seen ... takes my breath away.

It's true, the splash and final pages (the whole book, really) are what a comic should be.

Posted by jdp180

I don't really care for the writing but the art is fantastic

I love artwork as much as the next but how can anyone read a comic if they dont care for the writing? Shouldnt the writing always come first or is it just me?

Posted by Owie

I've gotta say, I had a real crap-tastic day. And then I read this...and it was amazing. It completely washed away my whole day like almost no other comic I've read in some time. Visceral. Incisive. Brutal. Beautiful. Elektra kicking all kinds of a$$. I mean all kinds. Wow. What an immersive experience. This whole series has been great, but this took it beyond.

Posted by Paste_Pot_Pete
Posted by akbogert

I've had writing sell me a book where the art was lacking before, but Elektra is the first thing I've ever followed where the art sold me so hard that the words hardly mattered. Not that they're bad, mind you -- just the art is on a whole different level.

Posted by eamon542000

The art alone is worth $3.99 price tag, I enjoy the writing as well and hope we get to see lesser known characters from the Assaisns guild

Posted by The_Titan_Lord

Elektra I really love you right now.

Edited by WaveMotionCannon

Love this book and Elektra is quickly rising into being one of my top favorite characters. The story is good but the art shows all the skill and brutality Elektra, Cape Crow and Bloody Lips possess and the damage they can do to each other. Wow.. Just wow.

Edited by Teerack

I'm excited about the next story. I really love Lady Bullseye.

I'm glad the artist in this issue finally got a better grasp at paneling. I really like the art with this book now that it flows like a comic book.

Posted by Ms-Lola

Love this book and Elektra is quickly rising into being one of my top favorite characters. The story is good but the art shows all the skill and brutality Elektra, Cape Crow and Bloody Lips possess and the damage they can do to each other. Wow.. Just wow.

Nice run down of this issue.