"Plastic #4" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Image Comics
Written by Doug Wagner
Illustrated by Daniel Hillyard
Colored by Laura Martin
2017, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on July 26th, 2017
I've had to hassle friends and relatives for money they owed me or DVDs they borrowed, but I've never gone through the lengths that Edwyn has gone to get his sex doll back. Granted, I haven't had as close of a relationship to those things as Edwyn has had with Virginia. The killer is hot on the trail of the captors and he's making every single one of them pay. Now he's got help.
It's almost startling to see how ruthlessly efficient Edwyn is at murder. He knows just what to do to lure his victim into the open and then take them out. It's not just the act of killing either; the guy knows how to torture someone. He is pissed and he's going to make sure these gangsters know they've wronged him.
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This issue's victims are painted as complete douchebags from the very beginning. Here you have a group of macho guys playing poker and calling each other gay. Fast forward a few pages where one of them is strapped to a table crying like a child, with bagged severed heads of his friends sit around him. Artist Daniel Hillyard brings the tinge of dark humor to Plastic while balancing it with blood-soaked terror. This is especially true in the facial expressions of the characters.
Hillyard doesn't always show the violence either. We don't actually see how the aforementioned heads got severed. We can fill in the blanks. This is also shown in a disturbing set of panels where Edwyn uses a fork as a weapon. We see his arm raised, then it's gone, then it's raised again and covered with blood. This continues for a few more panels with more and more sinew and gore flying up. Is that an eyeball? Holy crap, it's an eyeball.
Laura Martin's colors make this sequence even more unsettling. The whole thing is given a red hue, as if Edwyn has entered into a violent rage. Somehow, the blood stands out just as much, if not more, here. Martin also sets the mood of each scene, growing tension or breaking it with the lighting. It's terrifically paced.
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The relationship between Edwyn and his would-be hostage is intriguing. She's pulled suddenly into his world when he saved her from a corrupt cop trying to have his way with her in a previous issue. Now she's along for the ride and wants to help him. This could be a very bizarre love triangle between her, Edwyn, and Virginia. I can't wait to see what happens when the three get into a room.
Plastic is the most inventive and enjoyable serial killer story in years. Edwyn finds new and increasingly crazy ways to kill people all in an effort to track down his sweet Virginia. He's clearly deranged and needs some professional help. Is it wrong that I want him to get that help after he's brutally murdered these bad guys? From the looks of things, Plastic is setting up for an incredible finale and I can't wait.