Talk about saving the best ‘til last. Previous issues of this digital mini-series spotlighting characters featured in the new Infinite Frontier book have been OK, decent time passers whose point is to remind us that Chase, Obsisdian and co still exist. This one, though, is a keeper.
The star of the show is Psycho Pirate, whose Medusa Mask can manipulate emotions. If you’ve not seen him for a while, that’s because he’s not easy to find.
The unnamed visitor has heard a story about the ‘lonely man’.
But will it have a happy ending?
There’s more to the story, but I won’t give it all away. Suffice to say it sets Psycho Pirate up for his role in Infinite Frontier. In just 12 pages – actually, fewer, as there’s a framing sequence with Mr Bones – writer Dan Watters crafts a creepy tale that dares you not to read the companion book. Psycho Pirate has long been a blank slate, it’s the core of his character, but Watters recasts him as a Candyman figure, waiting to destroy the people who think they can play in his ballpark.
Watters, who plotted the story with Infinite Frontier author Joshua Williamson, uses the metafictive state Psycho Pirate has lived in since Crisis on Infinite Earths brilliantly, before showing that the villain can still be caught off guard.
Artist Christoper Mitten does a nifty job of conjuring up a spooky, claustrophobic atmosphere before the script allows him to go in a rather different direction. I especially like his Mr Bones, who doesn’t often get to look like an actual skeleton. Equal kudos to colourist Dave Stewart for weathering the art with his well-chosen tones. And letterer Tom Napolitano’s classic typewriter font really adds to the mood of this twisted tale.
What doesn’t work is the cover; I’ve said it previously, DC Digital should really shell out for an original illustration rather than cropping a piece of interior artwork.
Still, if you’re a fan of DC superheroes and have access to digital editions, this is definitely a comic to catch. Or you can shell out $9.99 for this week’s print collection of all six chapters. Perhaps, in a darkened room at the back of the comics shop, you’ll find a lonely man…