Issue: The Anchor #5
Release Date: February 10, 2010
Writer: Phil Hester
Artist: Brian Churilla
Cover A: Brian Churilla (Colors: Matthew Wilson)
Cover B: Robbi Rodriguez
Colors: Matthew Wilson
Letterer: Johnny Lowe
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Oh dear sweet baby Jesus in the golden fleece diapers, I HATE Hofi and McBride… I really, really, really do. I can’t even explain it anymore, I’m almost tired of saying it, but somehow I can’t stop. As I’ve said, I do like the story, I just hate those characters.
Everything they say is contrived and horrible. I mean HORRIBLE. They are so unnecessary — they don’t add anything to the story. At the beginning of this issue, we can see Hofi seated at some controls in some kind of flying thing, and I just shook my head… she’s a nurse, how would she know the first thing about any of those controls? Don’t get me started on McBride and his calling everyone “Brother” and “Sister.” How stereotypical. He went from being the hard-nosed Colonel to a racially charged stereotype. Guys, do us a favor, kill these two off and focus on Anchor. I am begging you.
OK, rant over (for now). I can get on with the rest of the review. Clem/Anchor starts off the issue beating the molten snot out of a lava baby. Yeah, that is right. I loved it. I hated the color commentary while it was going on, but I just think everything Clem does is “B.A.” in an understated way. Well, besides the rampant smashing and heart eating. What a tortured soul, and finally we’re starting to understand why.
To my absolute JOY, we discover that the flashbacks are more than just simple flashbacks to have two stories kinda going on at the same time… they are actually memories returning to Clem after each heart he eats. Getting Clem’s back story is pretty much my favorite part of the series thus far, even if people are trying to kill him quite often. How could your heart not bleed when he admits that he hopes that one day he’ll regain a happy memory? Mine did a little, maybe even teared up a tad, and then I saw Hofi and got over it. (Really guys, why Hofi? Why?)
Oh, and meanwhile, back in Hell… Satan is not so much creepy/scary looking, but rather sort of ridiculous looking with extra teeth and a strangely dressed companion. He looks like a frog, webbed hands, little froggy eyes, only with razor sharp teeth. I have to admit, that’s not what I expected. Sure, red with devil horns would have been a bit cliché, but I expect him to “ribbit” as much as damn. Also, how convenient that we found out this issue that with each heart Clem eats he regains memory that we weren’t entirely sure up until this point that he had lost, but now Frog-Satan wants to punish him by giving himi ALL of his memory back. Oh, and he can get all of his memory back, with a kiss from Hofi — I’d be reluctant too. Pacing guys, pretty please.
Let me take a moment to talk about the art. Usually I love it, and there were definitely panels in this issue that were great (even a few where Hofi didn’t look like a drag queen without makeup on), but the one just above really kinda stood out. Not for being great, but for seeming not quite to fit the mood. Clem just got finished explaining how he is always in prayer, and then that panel happened. Yes, please let’s giggle about beating things to smithereens and eating hearts, so CUTE! Also, Clem is easily influenced, from finding out that the “Wounded Man” told Hofi that a kiss could return his memories, he was for like five seconds hesitant, but as soon as she was all “But I wanna” he was all over that, with not so awesome results.
Anyhow, the issue ends with a bang and, well, I can’t say I’m disappointed by it, but I’m skeptical to see if it “sticks.” I know, I know, vague, but you’ve just got to read it for yourself. I wish I could like Hofi, even if not McBride, but really, I just don’t. I could live with the kinda angular art if her dialogue wasn’t so horrific. Oh well, again, I am enjoying the series, so long as I don’t get too worked up about the supporting characters. I have to say, I’m very interested to see what happens in the next few issues.
Rating: 3.5 / 5 Stars