Proof #16 (Image – Grecian / Rossmo / Fricke / Tindall)
The Lodge says goodbye to an agent. Meanwhile, life goes on as a new agent begins work, the ink monkey sets down some rules and Proof gets a date for the first time in a century and a half!
Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the action of a book and say it’s great because of all the cool fight scenes or because the way the characters play off of each other in the middle of giving the smack-down to the bad guys. But, this is temporal and as soon as the action dies down we realize we don’t care about the characters and that the book might very well suck.
Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in the heightened “feel” of a book and say it’s great because of the way the artist has constructed the atmosphere of the issue or because of how the reader can relate to the main character’s plight. But, this too is temporal because all style and no meat makes for a shortened attention span. This also may suck.
Sometimes to find a truly good series, it takes that “in between arc” issue, the one where nothing really happens except cleaning up a few loose ends and clearing the stage for the next act. If you can really enjoy that issue and be happy you paid for it, that means the series is gold.
And issue #16 shows that Proof is gold!
As stated in the Image summary, the majority of the issue takes place at a funeral and all of the main characters are taking a breather. Just are just trying to relax before some new crisis befalls them. No action, no fights, no huge reveal (well, a little bit of a reveal – Autumn’s back with a shout out to Mary Jane!)… just the heroes getting a day of rest while they mourn a friend. It is in these quiet and calm parts of tales that you can tell who the real story-tellers are. And Alex Grecian ranks among the best!
Subtlety fantastic writing and gorgeous art work are still a common thread in Proof sixteen issues later.
As usual, the issue is filled with wonderful bonuses. Lodged, a story by Alex Grecian and art by Paul Fricke, gives a more Saturday morning cartoon at Proof ( a real blast!) and we get the end, unfortunately, of Archie Snow’s pulp adventure. I say unfortunately because I want more of Tindall’s Archie Snow and I want it in bigger bites than 2-3 pages… anyone else up for a one-shot?
Issue Grade: A