The Curse of Brimstone #12 – Justin Jordan, Writer; Denys Cowan, John Stanisci, Inker; Rain Beredo, Colorist
Ray – 6/10
The latest New Age of DC Heroes series to end its run, The Curse of Brimstone has been an overall mixed bag of a title. It started with a compelling gothic story about hopeless small towns tempted by an other-dimensional cult of demons, but the road trip of cursed Joe and his sister Annie to take on the Salesman and his minions often seemed to go nowhere. Too many encounters with masters of body horror and twisted foot soldiers without any real answers. Now, in this final issue, Brimstone is finally confronted by the mastermind of his fight – and we still know virtually nothing about them.
The mysterious Infernal seems to have similar powers to Brimstone, but his burn hotter – pure white, like a magnesium flame. And he’s just one of many soldiers from the Dark Multiverse engaging in these temptations. And Brimstone’s come closer to causing them trouble than anyone else has.
Too much of this issue is a pretty generic battle, but it has one factor that lifts it above the average – the art of Denys Cowan. A legendary artist with a decades-long history at DC, Cowan is showing that he has not lost a step since his original runs. His Brimstone is truly demonic and haunting, and the large-scale combat going on around them is worthy of a final issue.
But the narrative doesn’t quite live up to that strong art. The mechanics of this whole curse are still very vague. Annie doesn’t have as much to do this final issue as I would have hoped, and it mostly seems to come down to two fire demons punching each other. Then there’s the cruel twist ending which seems to hint at a sequel – the second of these titles in as many weeks to end without actually ending, creating a huge status quo change that would likely never be followed up on. That’s just not good storytelling and leaves people frustrated.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.