Rorschach #9 – Tom King, Writer; Jorge Fornes, Artist; Dave Stewart, Colorist
Ray – 9.5/10
Ray: For a topic that so many books like to focus on, there are relatively few comics that do an excellent job of exploring what it’s like to be a detective. Too often, it’s just about brute-forcing your way to an answer. But in this issue, Tom King and Jorge Fornes seamlessly puts us in the footsteps of our unnamed detective as he investigates the biggest break in the case yet—the farmhouse where Wil and Laura trained for their assassination attempt on Turley. After we saw how they built the compound last month, this issue focuses on the last days before their fatal attack. This is a story of two very disturbed people who couldn’t be more different, with their trauma being the only thing that seems to bond them. At times, they don’t even seem to be sure why they’re doing it, with Laura struggling to figure out how she got from being raised by a Redford-hating father to this. It’s sad, intimate, and sometimes unbearably tense.
These segments are bookended by the detective as he wanders around the now-abandoned house, looking for clues. We flip back and forth between the two timelines, in mostly wordless segments as he combs the house—until he finds something out of place. The segment where he slowly pieces together the truth of what this house is hiding is one of the best of the run, and he uncovers a new mystery that even he’s not quite ready for. There is one big twist left, about the unnamed third partner in their assassination plot, and while it’s not a twist on the level of this month’s Strange Adventures, it is going to shock Watchmen fans and cast doubt on just about everything we know about one player. With only three issues left, it’s likely we’re getting close to some even bigger reveals as this strange, brilliant puzzle box of a comic enters its last act. Right now, it’s looking like the Watchmen-verse has a fourth classic chapter in the making.
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GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.