Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Vertigo Comics (DC Comics)
Aaron & Guera
Scalped kicks off a new arc with this issue and it seems to introduce a very key character to the larger story. Up to this point the story has focused on Dash, his mother and the interactions on the reservation, both past and present. However, one central character was barely touched, Dash’s father. This issue seems to open the door for this character, but from the past.
The comic book follows along the story of a Vietnam soldier, Wade, and his misfortunes. Well, actually, he has all of the good luck because he manages to survive some horrific encounters while everyone around him seems to not be so lucky. Jason Aaron obviously has a large interest in the Vietnam War and he shows his love of the genre with this issue. The opening pages are excellent.
Wade ends up staying in Vietnam after his tour is up. He finds himself mixed in with drugs and other undesirables from the underworld. Eventually Saigon falls and he is forced to head back to the States where he finds a new quest, one that puts him on a collision course with the reservation where Dash eventually hails from.
Wade mirrors Dash in many ways. He’s conflicted as he finds himself doing plenty of wrong only to have a brief moment where he corrects his wrongdoing, but with a flash of violence. Even when he is acting as he thinks he should he ends up taking things to the extreme, just like Dash. He is also a loner, just like Dash. Wade’s introduction seems to provide a mapping of Dash’s personality. This makes sense because Dash didn’t seem to resemble his mother or her behavior at all.
The artwork is different from many of the previous issues because it is set during a war. The art doesn’t hold back at all depicted some horrific acts in the opening pages. Then in the second half the art reverts back to relying on the close ups and the facial expressions to sell the drama. It’s a good visual story and I liked the branching out with the war scenes.
Scalped is a book that really keeps building story on top of story. This issue seems to provide some answers to some mysteries but the next couple of issues could easily change all of that. That’s the beauty of this title; you just don’t know what’s going to happen. I definitely recommend this issue and if you are a new reader you might find something here to jump on with.
4 out of 5 Geek Goggles