Writer: J.M. Dematteis
Artist: Fernando Blanco
Publisher: DC Comics
Can I say that The Phantom Stranger has become one of my favorite books from DC? Well it has and for good reason. In a world overflowing with aliens with god like powers, meta-humans, and mages it is fresh to get a book that has taken a character that has been a part of the DC universe for decades and given him a new spin. While most are not happy with some of the retcons in the New 52, I think the Stanger actually fits pretty dang well.
Issue #13 is a Forever Evil tie-in that picks up right where the last issue ends: with the house where the Stranger and his family used to live up in flames courtesy of the Sin Eater. After some banter back and forth and some revelations from the angel Zuriel, the Stranger sets out to do two tasks he swore he would do. The first task is to give a gift to the family of Doctor Light who was killed by Superman during the Trinity War and the second to finally have his battle with The Question.
I love the dialogue in this issue more than anything else and that really is the high point in any Stranger book. Dematteis does a fantastic job writing this series. The way he’s incorporating the aspects of heaven and hell, the past of the Stanger as Judas, and his betrayal of the Lamb is spot on. I also love the questions asked by The Question, is his destiny tied to the Stranger? Why was he damned for all eternity? Who is he?
DC has not come forward with any about this incarnation of The Question. All we know is he is a part of the Trinity of Sin with Pandora and the Stanger. We know nothing about him and I don’t see us learning who he is anytime soon. However until we do figure out his story we get great issues like this one where we see these two battle it out. I also loved how being a Forever Evil tie-in that they do talk about everything the Stanger has done so far in the arc all the way back to the Trinity War. It isn’t like most of the DC books where the stories before FE are now continuing, Phantom Stranger is moving right along with the arc and it won’t stop just yet.
The last page of the book shows Pandora, The Question, and The Stranger teleported to the Rock of Eternity and bound in shackles by none other than JOHN CONSTANTINE! This issue is right in-between the issue of Justice League Dark #24 and #25. John summoning them to help him KILL EVIL! John is creating his team to take on the Crime Syndicate and I must say it is a good one.
If you are tired of the mundane issues of Superman, sick of the Green Lanterns constantly involved in some kind of wa,r and tired of everything being a Zero Year tie-in, then go pick up some issues of The Phantom Stranger. This is a very well written series with fantastic art and it is a good escape from the world of capes and costumes. So immerse yourself in mythology, theology, and demons. Most importantly, have fun!
So from Spin to you I give this book a SINFUL
4.5 out of 5 nerds