"Spirit of the Law #1 - #2" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Monkeybrain Comics
Written by Brandon Seifert
Illustrated by Michael Montenat
2012, 30 Pages Total (14 / 16)
Comics published on October 31st 2012 and November 14th 2012
You know what two things should go together more? Mobsters and the supernatural. Those two genres have some nice overlays, especially when you throw in things like ghosts. With the amount of people that gangsters send to sleep with the fishes, you'd imagine that ghosts would be a cause for concern. This is the case in Spirit of the Law, the new digital-exclusive comic written by Brandon Seifert.
The two-part opening arc shows the murder of a young woman named Daisy Dumont, who comes back for revenge on the people that put her in the ground. The kicker is she wears a blindfold not unlike the portrayal of Lady Justice. She sticks to the sword and leaves the scales elsewhere as she hacks through these mobsters in increasingly violent ways.
These seems like a pretty basic premise. Seifert doesn't need a lot of room to tell the story. The entire two-parter totals just 30 pages including covers, but none of this space is wasted. Every panel has something necessary in it. Even panels that mimic previous ones work well. For example, there's a shot towards the end of the first chapter where you see the ghost of Dumont and the next panel is the same shot but without her. She's vanished. It really justifies why these mobsters are so frightened.
The execution – no pun intended – is where it excels. Right off the bat, the tone is creepy, like you feel a chill running up your spine. The opening panel is a shot of the blindfolded Dumont with a gun held to the back of her head. Artist Michael Montenat did a fantastic job with this as well as the rest of the comic. Seifert lets him shine through in many panels, letting the art do the talking. There's not a lot of dialogue or exposition to bog down this artwork. You're not going to see a ton of thought boxes cluttering the pages. Sometimes all you need is a shot of a woman viciously slicing a man in half with a huge sword.
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The design of Dumont is very chilling. The blindfold over her eyes gives her an emotionless look. She shows no mercy and has no regrets about murdering these men. She's very pale with a tattered grey dress covering her body. It really cements the idea that she just stepped out of the grave.
Of course, the main problem I have with Spirit of the Law is that it's only 30 pages. Seifert created this as a two-parter to begin with, but I hope there's more to come. After all, those gangsters had bosses and they were probably the ones that ordered the hit on Daisy Dumont to begin with. She shouldn't rest until justice is served!
It should also be mentioned that Spirit of the Law is a digital exclusive title from Monkeybrain Comics. This means that you can only get a copy of it through comiXology. For less than $2 you can get both issues and still have more content than some of the single issues that cost twice that from the big two publishers.
Spirit of the Law is a great read but it's an introduction. I want to see more from this team. While this lacks some of the fantastic dialogue we've seen in comics like Witch Doctor, it works on an entirely different level. It's obviously a very different story and tone, going in a much darker direction. This is a story of pure and simple revenge. It's just that it's coming from beyond the grave.
To purchase Spirit of the Law, you can head over to comiXology here.