• Ghosted #10

    Published by: Image Comics
    Released on: May 21, 2014

    Jackson and Trick are on their own in the temple, now that Wenona has summoned the demonic crow spirit and it’s now possessed her grand-daughter, Nina. The evil cult leader Maestro has shackled Jackson’s protective spirit of Anderson into Jackson’s worst memory and, with all seeming lost, Jackson just wants to split.


    His old buddy Trick convinces him otherwise, though, that Nina is the innocent woman worth saving here. And since Jackson has a death wish of sorts he might as well and try to save her. Maestro refuses to help since he’s lost his cult followers to this new demon so Jackson throws him out. And Skinner, the guy Wenona had been preparing as the “proper” vessel for the crow demon, gets literally brushed aside by said demon, now that she inhabits Nina’s body.

    Wenona wants to use the demon to get rich by stealing from previously-inaccessible vaults. But she tries to make sell this to the demon which gives Jackson an opportunity. He steps between them, unafraid but obviously still wanting to live even if he says he doesn’t care to. The demon recognizes this and questions his inner turmoil, figuring to get an answer before tearing him apart. But Jackson’s tale is a sad one, wherein he managed to murder the only person he ever loved, and that’s taken away everything he had worth living for. As Wenona grows more insistent for the demon to kill him, Jackson asks her to do so but only if she wants to, not because the old witch wants it.

    This is sufficient to reach Nina’s spirit inside there and make her stop. Wenona is furious but the demon smacks her out of the temple, out into the jungle with the wild spirit animals who are only too happy to finish the old witch off for good. Nina then barfs out the invasive spirit crows and returns to normal, thanking Jackson for his help. During this, Trick was able to get the other girls at the temple out to safety and is carrying a stack of valuable books when he’s suddenly shot down. Skinner, it seems, isn’t quite done but admits he was aiming for Jackson instead. Jackson angrily grabs him and, instead of killing him, tosses him into the pit of darkness from which the demon was summoned, leaving him to the horrors-beyond-knowing there…

    His best friend is dead but he’s managed to save the woman so now Jackson just wants to take whatever of value they can find here and scoot. This idea is cut short, though, by the timely arrival of the authorities who are there to arrest him. Meanwhile, Maestro comes to and speaks his plans aloud for rebuilding his cult of power. He’s interrupted by Markus, who like Maestro has a score to settle with Jackson. But he’s clearly the power-player here so he takes Maestro under his wing, telling him he’s got his own plans for them both…

    A satisfying conclusion this this story arc that pushes the characters forward nicely. Author Joshua Williamson plays a great deal close to his chest with the characters backgrounds and subsequent motivations but he manages to tease it out nicely while introducing new elements that'll keep you reading. And artists Davide Gianfelice and Miroslav Mrva get a hefty workout in this episode, with some big cross-page panels and lots and lots of action to get wonderfully messy with.