My current roommate is a fan, so I decided to look at one of the many books he has.
I find it ironic how people call so much crap on Leifield for what he did in the 90's, but I don't hear much on McFarlane, despite clearly sharing elements (Look at the Simmon's military flashback, and tell me that gun and armor don't look like Leifield creations). Heck, everyone in the book keeps on referring to the horrid Youngblood.
A semi-amnesiac Spawn is wandering the streets after he died 5 years ago. His memories are only vague, but he does remember his wife's face. Elsewhere, detectives Sam and Twitch are investigating various murders of criminals.
After saving a woman from a bunch of thugs (you know, what every superhero does at the beginning of everything), he suddenly goes through a mental breakdown of some kind and screams "NOOOOOOOOOOOO!" to the sky. After images flash everywhere in his mind, he's shown shivering and frightened in the arms of the woman he just saved, who's telling him everything gonna be all right. Apparently seeing a vigilante wearing a giant cloak with skulls, chains and spikes all over him suffer a mental breakdown in front of her, makes her act sympathetic and comforting. I know he just saved her life, but seriously, would YOU try the be comforting to a probably insane vigilante who shoots out exploding green orbs from his fingertips?
Near the end of the issue, Spawn takes off his mask and sees how ugly he is and starts crying. And the issue ends with Malbolgia suddenly popping up and saying that Spawn's problems have just begun, and the next issue has the Violator!
Really, I didn't like this. Not just because the 90's artwork, but because the storytelling tries to go all over the place in every panel that isn't a flashback. Crazy layouts should be used sparingly to emphasize certain moments, not make the whole comic a jumble. Spiderweb panels for a funeral make no sense. And news announcers should be moving their mouths if they're talking,