"Goners #5" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Image Comics
Written by Jacob Semahn
Illustrated by Jorge Corona
2015, 32 Pages, $2.99
Comic released on February 18th, 2015
These poor Latimer kids can't seem to catch a break. After watching their parents die on live television, they've been on the run from all manner of supernatural monsters looking to put an end to their bloodline once and for all. To make matters worse, it seems that Josiah has a unique branch on his family tree that directly links him to all the chaos that's surrounded his life lately. All of this is coming to a head at his parents' home in King's Bluff, with demons and other creatures swarming the grounds and police forces coming in fast. But wait, things get worse.
Writer Jacob Semahn has this way of adjusting your concept of "bad" throughout Goners. At first it was bad enough that Josiah and Zoe saw their parents die. Then things got progressively worse, but you could always think things like, "Well, at least they have their bodyguard," or "At least they have each other." Then Semahn shakes that out, so I have no more "At least..." statements left. These kids are facing unimaginable horrors that would be hard for any sane adult to tackle, let alone a child.
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The role reversal between Zoe and Josiah that was made apparent in the previous issue continues here in full force. Zoe barely makes a dent this time around, with the spotlight focused primarily on young Josiah and his demonic lineage. He's come to terms with this and has matured quickly, able to deal with the situation at hand far better than Zoe. It's like he's rocketed through the stages of acceptance while Zoe is still in the first steps.
We get a glimpse of Latimers past in this issue, showing us just how long the family has been fighting the forces of darkness and keeping the world safe from these terrors. It seems like the current path of destruction began many years ago, like it was destined to happen. If that's the case, what chance do these children have against such evil?
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Artist Jorge Corona packs Goners full to the brim with action. Each panel feels like it's moving, as if it's filled with an energy that's trying to get out. The skinwalker returns to battle the police outside the Latimer home. He wears a wolf's pelt that clings to him like an ill-fitting coat. There's something unnatural about the way he looks, like his body is rejecting this abomination of nature.
Semahn and Corona build to a shocking ending that really changes everything. I know you hear that phrase a lot in comics, but I mean it here. Looking back at the beginning of the series, it's hard to believe that things have escalated to such an extent. I found myself looking at these pages and thinking, "No, they can't be doing this. Please don't be doing this." But I couldn't turn away. The creators have pulled me in. I'm deeply invested in these characters and I want them to avoid the supernatural train wreck that they're barreling towards at full speed...but I don't think that's in the cards just yet. I mean, the comic is called Goners for a reason, right?