By Laramie Martinez
Night’s Dominion has been moving away from what made me like its inaugural issue. This issue cements the transition from heist/dungeon crawl to superhero team up. The change, at least for me, is somewhat of a disappointment. I know that this comic was originally billed as having some capes and tights influences, but I feel like the mystery cult and the undead hordes as a potential threats were more appealing when they were underground instead of when they come out in the open. I can’t be mad at Naifeh though, it isn’t as though this change is abrupt. I’ve seen hints of it from the very first issue.
The army of the dead has begun their invasion, and our group of misfits is the only thing standing in their way. This issue felt like a superhero comic almost from the beginning. All of the characters who had gone off their separate ways have rejoined in the effort to stop the undead army. We see Magus finally rise to his full sorcerer potential and The Night’s name finally get cleared by Furie. Besides what I mentioned in my opening, I was also a little let down by the political aspect of this book. Back when the plot thread was first introduced, I thought the political angle would play more of a role in the narrative. But looking back, I feel as though the political betrayal didn’t really do much for the story. The undead army could have invaded without a member in the inner circle of government. It feels like the thread was cut short by the invasion.
Cut short is the best way I can sum up how I feel about this issue and the series in general. I think Naifeh could have stretched this out a bit longer and done a little more with the city councils politics and the separate lives of each of the characters. This is my way of saying I really enjoyed this comic and I don’t want to see it rushed to a conclusion. Whatever the opposite of a backhanded compliment is (an open-palmed critique?) that’s what I’m going to give this issue.
I know it sounds like I’ve only got complaints for this issue, but it’s more like I have gone from loving it to liking it. Naifeh’s art is always great and the action scenes here are of the same caliber as we’ve seen in past issues. How this story wraps up will determine whether this series falls into the great or good category.
My final word on this issue is to stick with it. If you’re like me you’ve followed this arc to the penultimate issue. I believe it is good enough to warrant us seeing it through to the end.
Night's Dominion #5
Creator: Ted Naifeh
Publisher: Oni Press