‘The Goon’ used to be a big part of my comic book reading and for very good reason. It was a book that could make me laugh on one page and then quickly have to pretend that there was something in my eye when I went on to the next. ‘The Goon’ had everything so I was understandably a bit sad when things were scaled back and the comics stopped coming quite so regularly (scheduling issues and so on).
It was a huge deal for me then when I found ‘One For The Road’, nestled amongst the advance reading from Dark Horse, my phone downloaded it all very quickly and I was very grateful for that.
It was a shame then that ‘One For The Road’ didn’t match up to expectations.
I’ve come to realise that Powell is a lot more suited to telling longer ‘Goon’ tales than he is with ‘one offs’ like ‘One For The Road’; the plot has room to breathe and grow and the humour is a lot more organic. Things felt quite contrived and forced here and there didn’t seem to be a lot of point to what was going on other than to rehash a few tired old laughs. The artwork is as gorgeous as ever though; Powell and Stewart combine to form a landscape and characters that are totally unique yet fit the story just right. It was the art rather than the tale that kept me going this time.
For me, ‘One For The Road’ was like visiting old friends only to realise that I don’t actually have that much in common with them anymore; my comic book reading has moved on. I’ll keep half an eye open for longer ‘Goon’ tales but I think I’ll be giving the one-shots a miss from now on.
‘Ghost’ #5 marks the beginning of Chris Sebella and Jan Duursema’s stint as the creative team on ‘Ghost’ and the early signs are that they’re not going to do a bad job at all. #5 may be all about setting the scene, for a tale to unfold, but there’s a really smooth transition from #4 that I appreciated. Things just flow and that’s the sign of a tale well told, especially when a new team is picking up the baton.
As for the story itself, it’s a well balanced mix of Elisa trying to bring order to her life and the streets of Chicago while a major new player gears up to really make his presence felt. Each theme raises enough questions to hold my interest and Duursema presents it all very well, with a hard edge to proceedings that typifies what ‘Ghost’ is all about. More of that please, now I want to read #6.
So It looks like there’s now a bit of a gap in my comic book reading that needs to be filled (sorry ‘Goon’ but I’m feeling a bit let down). Any recommendations from you guys?