Published on January 28th, 2015 | by JCDoyle0
Death Vigil #6 – Review
Amongst the midst of chaos the Death Vigil appear to be holding their own.
But then the shit kind of hits the fan. Warning, contains spoilers but then again, have you seen this issue’s cover?
The Death Vigil are exposed to the world as they battle the Necromancers and their demon in the heart of New York City. However by working together the monster slayers hardly break a sweat. The Kill Team of Chiyoko and Vlado manage to dispatch the necromancers with a wonderful combination of powers while Mia chomps down on the demon.
This whole battle sequence has two very interesting developments. The first is Bernie’s reaction to the near death collision between Sam and a pointy chunk of demon debris. She overreacts, bristling with concern that goes beyond any emotion she has currently shown. The scorn that follows, once she realises that he is okay, hammers home her strong feelings for him.
Unfortunately while this touching scene plays out, Clara has got it into her head she can stop a running necromancer all by herself. It doesn’t pan out as she expects and Lord Asrah literally gets her up against the wall right before another interesting development… Clara does something unexpected.
The reader is then treated to the villain’s dastardly plan and the complex web that Maria has woven, proving that she is the true evil in the story. Everything has been meticulously mapped out and her knowledge of the Veilrippers and of what Bernardette can do proves to be the Death Vigil’s undoing. Out of everyone in the comic, Maria is the one at the centre of everything, controlling it all like a twisted puppet master and all to get her hands on Bernie’s scythe. There’s betrayal, confrontation, a possible death (hint: check the cover) and a victory for evil in the final, most surprising scenes of the comic. It wouldn’t be an understatement to say that it all comes tumbling down around Bernie.
Sejic has pulled a Whedon. He’s spent the last 5 issues letting the reader become engrossed in the lives of this mixed group of people, bringing you to a stage that you care about them and what they do. Then, with little warning, he smashes through the fun comic/fantasy image with a sledge hammer, leaving shattered pieces of your favourite characters laying all of the place. It’s a shock to the system and once the issue finds its downward spiral, the reader barely has chance to take it all in. The heroes fall left, right and centre, in a manner of different ways.
The opening page is the closest the reader gets to safety in this issue because from that moment onwards even the panel design starts to break down. The safe uniform structure of the panels on page one is quickly broken as the variety of panel shapes and sizes alters from page to page and the images within them start to burst out, not allowing themselves to be confined. It’s as if Sejic wants the reader to be as disorientated as the characters are becoming. There is a sequence where Maria explains her plan and this is overlaid with various locations and time periods but it easy to follow because of the clever panel design that Sejic adopts. This illustrates the detail to which Maria has gone to arrange the Death Vigil’s downfall. Sejic proves himself to be a master craftsman with this comic and the freedom of writing and illustrating his own work is evident more so here than in previous issues. Everything works in sync: script, art and design.
Sejic has set himself a high watermark with Death Vigil and he keeps surpassing it with every issue. I have no idea what he has planned for the final two issues but they can’t come soon enough for me.
Title: Death Vigil
Publisher: Top Cow/Image
Writer/Artist: Stjepan Sejic