Overview: We’re an issue removed from the big showdown with Lilith, and things are looking up for our band of misfits. The problem is, looks can be deceiving, and things in Manson are by no means improving. For the time being however, our ladies get some respite from doom and are able to enjoy each others company. Uncle Johnny, Rachel, and Jet are healed physically, and at this point even small victories are worth celebrating. Meanwhile Malus is still around, and that’s never a good thing, especially when he can’t be recognized. Also, Zoe continues to jump back and forth between adorably precocious and disturbingly creepy.
Story: We are definitely in a transitional phase of this book, things seem better on the surface, but Moore is sowing seeds for future problems. The mystery of Zoe and her weapon, along with developing machinations of Malus foreshadow some epic mayhem in the battle between good and evil taking place in Manson. There’s also the strange stiches that the creepy doctor guy–I forget his name–put in Johnny’s head, and the visions Rachel gets when she touches Zoe’s knife. We still don’t have much information regarding either of those things, but just through context I’m certain they are not going to lead to positive outcomes.
I love how much humor Moore is able to infuse this book with; scenes with Rachel and Zoe are full of one-liners that make me chuckle, yet also creep me out simultaneously. This is a difficult thing to make work, but Moore has such a wonderful ability to write dialogue, that it doesn’t seem contrived or out of place, it’s just how these ladies react when faced with trauma. Like wise the relationship between Johnny and Rachel is built on mutual trust and love, and you understand that just by witnessing their banter. They’re both without any other family, and that combined with their personalities, has forged a unique bond that is a joy to witness.
This is my first arc reading in singles, and it is a much different experience. I know that this storyline will probably last four to six issues, so it’s just a matter of Moore putting the pieces together. There is definitely an overall sense of looming danger, but like the characters, we’re at the mercy of others–and the tension leads to entertaining stories for us, so that’s awesome.
Art: It’s no secret that I’m a huge Terry Moore fan, and I have trouble finding new ways to describe how rad his art is. There was nothing too wild this issue save for a beautiful collage showing, on one page, the history of Zoe’s mysterious knife, and a few other hands it has been wielded by throughout history. It is concise and affective, there is much more to the story, but this page gives you all you need as an overview for the time being. I also really enjoy the black and white art. It’s not very common these days, but it showcases the artist’s talent so well; you can’t hide any mistakes with the stark contrast found in these pages, and you can see more clearly how amazing Moore’s line work is.
Another thing Moore does so well–and you all know how much I appreciate this–is facial expressions. There’s never a doubt of what each character means when they speak, because their tone is–literally–written across their face. Moore utilizes all the facets of a face as well, eye brows, mouths, and eyes all work together to provide a full picture of what each character feels at any given moment. It’s easy to see how fantastic this all is when done by a master like Terry Moore, and the seeming ease that he pulls it off with is a testament to his talent as a storyteller.
Conclusion: While this chapter was largely a set-up for future events, the character work, and peek into some deeper storyline territory kept things interesting. I wish I had the next chapter already, but that is the case with every trade and issue of this series that I’ve read; there’s never enough. The last arc seemed to end things with Lilith, but it doesn’t appear that our girls are out of the woods yet; being an immortal soul, it’s possible that we haven’t seen the last of Lilith. Malus is still around as well, plotting whatever evil it is he’s wont to do, so there’s plenty of room for this series to continue. Hopefully we get some updates on Jet, Carl, and that creepy doctor–still forget his name–next month. Last issue was a great time to jump on to the floppy train with this series, which is exactly what I did. It really makes a difference as well, because this series is published by Moore and his wife Robyn, so if you really want to support creators directly, you can’t do much better than Rachel Rising. Do yourself, or someone you know, a favor and start picking up these issues, I promise you won’t regret reading this chilling and amazing series by one of the all-time greats.
So what do you think NBC! faithful? Did you pick up Rachel Rising #26? Let me know what you thought in the comments below, and as always thanks for reading!