The GeeksverseDarkness #89 “High Noon”

Darkness #89 “High Noon”
Published on Tuesday, February 1, 2011 by

I will not claim to have read every issue of Darkness, although in the past year I have read nearly the entire back catalog so I feel that I know the character very well, which sadly leaves me saying that this book doesn’t work as a Darkness story.

It has the sinner as a newly empowered being. It has copious darklings which jump about unfettered ransacking from the shadows. It has crime. It has corruption. It also has cowboys in the old west?

This isn’t the series’ regular Darkness. This isn’t street wise Jackie Estacado who walks a fine line between madness, corruption, and salvation. Instead this is a Estacado that exists somewhere in the ancestry of the family tree, a cut throat and a bandit who is high on power. He has some neat tricks. Being a mystical bandit he channels his energy into his trusty horse until flames and smoke come out the nose. He has a whip that is a rattle snake. He has just about every corny mystical western that could possibly be included and it doesn’t work.

This issue hits the store shelves after an arc has just finished, in which Estacdo has fought a larger corrupt power and once again saved the world without tights. This issue is most likely filler between arcs. I’m not sure now if I’m rooting for this episode of pre-Jackie Estacado Darkness to slip away or tie in down the line. In general I have enjoyed learning about other Darkeness and Witchblade wielders in past issues, however, with this cowboy Darkness I don’t feel like they’ve contributed much to the mythos. It has been established again and again that Jackie has rogues in his family tree, but this issue doesn’t do more than roll in that fact.

Despite the new maturity warning on the first page, this is not the most violent Darkness that you’ve ever read.

They can’t all be winners, but Top Cow can be proud that this product has been fairly consistent even without the tightest of shipping schedules. I’ll tune in next month to see where some Darkness goes next. I’m still excited to follow Jackie Estacado through the conclusion of Four Horsemen and I’ll follow him through Artifacts. Jackie Estacado is a busy Darkness bearer perhaps he just needed a month off.

Writer Joshua Hale Fialkov
Art Matt Timson
Letters Troy Peteri
Cover A Matt Timson (Western Ghost Rider looking cover)
Cover B Sheldon Mitchell and Joe Weems

But as Lavar Burton used to say, “don’t take my word for it,” go to the Pryde Forum and leave your own opinion.

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