This is probably the best cover of the entire series… both covers that is, they’re just cool as shit. This issue actually kicks off a new story arc, so if you've been wondering what all the fuss is about with this series then start here. This is was a very good issue and while it kept to its formula it spiced it up so that it didn't feel like you were reading a rinse and repeat of the previous story arcs. Everything felt familiar, but Wiebe continued to throw a new twist here and there to throw you off. The story kicks off with the boys hunting in the snow. Peter downs a stag, but as Felix reaches the kill he’s forced into a standoff with a wolf. He kills the wolf and we pull out to a picture of him standing with both kills and an older version of himself looking at the picture. Our writer/reporter character John Parsons arrives in the Church and Felix gives him the cold shoulder instantly which is a very different greeting than the previous Lost Boys gave. He’s not looking forward to going down memory lane and apparently has the difficult chunk of the story to tell. He hands Parsons a box and tells him that everything in the box is a memory and has a story.
His first story is about another winter day. The boys under Peter’s direction are now well-trained and looking to take over a German supply truck. In one instance, Felix snipes the gunner of one of the escort trucks and they blow the bridge behind them. The German’s divide and so Peter’s men divide. The results are a victory for Peter’s side with no casualties, but they find one important piece of information. Felix hands a letter to Peter and he basically blows it off because he doesn't read German. We cut to the present and Felix encourages Parsons to read it as well and he also states that he doesn't read German. Felix tells him to open it anyways. Parsons sees what Peter saw… the signature.
The story is very well-paced and the writing continues to be phenomenal. The one and only gripe that I have with this series is Peter. Now, I understand that the series has pulled back from focusing on him all the time and each story arc changes to a new character, but it’s kind of losing focus on Peter. He’s no longer the happy-go-lucky character he began as, but as his journey gets darker and darker we’re not really given any insight into his mind outside of what the characters say. It’s an interesting way to present it for sure, but it concerns me that I’ve begun to disconnect from the character; unless the goal is to distance Peter and make him more of a myth than a relatable character. None of this is a knock against the series, but it’s something I noticed while reading this issue. Perhaps I just want to relate to him and I’m missing the point that I cannot.
I’m liking the art more and more with each issue as Jenkins gets into the same rhythm all artists eventually hit when they spend a great deal of time on a series. His style lends itself to the winter setting and the water coloring was a great touch. In fact I really hope that the water coloring continues to play a role in the art in future issues.
I really hope that people don’t forget about this series yet again, I’m a huge supporter of the month off routine for independent series because it ensures a level of quality stays with the book. Retailers may argue that it’s long enough for anyone to forget about a series, but if you've been following this journey you’re definitely not going to want to miss out on this issue. It’s only getting better and better with each new story arc.
Writer: Kurtis J. Wiebe
Artist: Tyler Jenkins
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: 6/12/13