Remember how I’ve been saying for a few issues now that the story really needs to check in and focus on Peter for a bit? Well that’s exactly what this issue does! I’m not taking the credit, but I will say that great minds think alike. This issue is in fact pretty spectacular. We not only check in with Peter, but Tiger Lilly’s story continues as well. This is something we’ve seen before in the story as one character’s journey progresses with another’s. I’m not going to tell you about Tiger Lilly though, let’s just instead focus on Peter.
Where has he been since he was captured and his Lost Boys scattered into the wind? This issue shows us exactly where he’s been and that’s a prisoner of Emmerich one of the hunters that Hook sent after Peter and the lost boys. He’s for some reason keeping Peter alive for Haken (aka Hook) and in some ways is training him or bettering him for war/his battle with Hook.
Peter of course tries to escape by hitting Emmerich over the head with a chess board and kicking him in the face. He dashes outside hoping to gain enough ground that he’ll be ahead of Emmerich’s dogs, but alas he’s too slow. The dogs catch up to him and Peter is forced up a tree where Emmerich finds him. Emmerich punishes Peter by chaining him underwater.
The issue is basically one long conversation, but it’s probably the most interesting conversation of the entire series. It was better than anything between Hook and Peter and frankly I could have read issue after issue of these two characters talking. What’s also stunning about this issue is that Kurtis Wiebe not only builds Peter’s characters, but he fleshes out the characters motivation over the past seventeen issues. By the end of this issue you should have a clear understanding of how Peter sees the world, but more importantly how he sees the war. Wiebe continues to show masterful skills on this series and manages to approach each issue in a new and exciting way.
Because the issue is one long and powerful conversation the art has the very important job of making it interesting and that it does. The scenes are still dynamic and intense, but more importantly there’s a real sense of friendship between the two men. Maybe it’s just mutual respect, but there’s a strange relationship of sorts between the two men that is nowhere to be found in the dialogue. It’s all in the body language. The way they sit comfortably in the same boat or the dock. Peter isn’t afraid of Emmerich, instead it might be a bit like a boy without his father finding a man without a son.
Tyler Jenkins continues to improve with each issue, he really does. Peter looks a little older in this issue, but his design is more refined. His crazy hair is still there, but he’s handsome now and doesn’t look like a silly child. Kelly Fitzpatrick has also lightened his hair color which for some reason suits his character better. I noticed it, but only because I’ve always felt his hair was out of place previously. I don’t know why, but the new hair color really did capture Peter’s character more.
I don’t have much to say about Ed Brisson’s consistent and powerful lettering, but I will say that he plays his role in making this story great each and every issue. Whenever I see his name in the credits I know it’s going to be good no matter his role.
What’s annoying and also great about this series is that you never have a favorite issue for too long. When I used to read X-Men I would enjoy the series always, but a favorite issue would rarely pop up. With Peter Panzerfaust it always seems like the newest issue is my favorite because it comes along and somehow manages to shine above all that came before it. If you’re a fan of storytelling then check it out regardless of what issue it’s on.
Writer: Kurtis Wiebe Artist: Tyler Jenkins Colorist: Kelly Fitzpatrick Letterer: Ed Brisson Publisher: Image/Shadowline Comics Price: $3.50/2.99 Release Date: 4/9/14 Format: Ongoing – Print/Digital