MANIFEST DESTINY is a solid adventure story and in the comic book world, series that are solely based around the adventure genre tend to flop. However, MANIFEST DESTINY has compelling and dynamic characters, a familiar story and a dash of horrific, giant monsters, which make it, overall, a very exciting read.
How do you deal with your boat stuck in the middle of a river with a giant, man-eating frog lying in wait for you to screw up? Well, you plan a trap. Lewis has the idea to set a trap for the frog and while it's not incredibly brilliant, it's the only plan they have. Things come together pretty slow, and this something I loved and kind of hated about the book. The first arc moved at a pretty quick pace and here, it's not the case. However, it is put together well and there's no denying that. It's written well and has a nice flow to it.
The kicker of the issue is towards the end when Clark discovers Miss LeBrun and Corporal Hardy. In the last issue, Hardy tried to force himself on LeBrun, but was ultimately stopped by a giant mosquito. Clark finds clues as to what happened to Miss LeBrun and goes into a blind rage. The only thing that stops him is the grotesque final page of this issue, beautifully drawn by Matthew Roberts with colors from Owen Gieni. Roberts and Gieni, month after month, do a great job with placing the reader in this time period. The settings look wonderful and the colors fit the scheme of the book.
The series has been a tad slow the past couple of issues and it crawls to almost a halt here. The boat is stuck in the water and while there's a plan to deal with the giant frog in the river, little to nothing is accomplished here. The issue is simply in a holding pattern right now. And when compared to the first arc, it's night and day.
MANIFEST DESTINY #9 is a bit slow, but it's still a great read. The group is stuck and there's not too much for the to do, which results in an issue not as enjoyable as its predecessors. However, overall, the story of Lewis and Clark discovering new, over-sized monsters is still one of my favorite reads each month and it's nice to see there's threats all over this new world, not just o the river for this arc. I highly recommend checking out MANIFEST DESTINY. It's unique, weird, and engaging. It will quickly become one of your favorite month-to-month reads.