And Then I Read: THE SPIRIT 31 & 32

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Images © Will Eisner Studios, Inc.

The final two issues of DC’s revival of THE SPIRIT are two of the best in the run. They’re written and pencilled by Mike Ploog an artist with long experience in comics and animation, and obviously a love of Eisner’s characters, as he portrays them excellently. (And nice to see veteran artist Nick Cardy doing the cover of 31, too.) The plot combines criminals and magic, mystery and humor, atmosphere and action in a way very reminiscent of Eisner at his best. There are some modern touches, but they’re minimal. For the most part this story could have come from the 1950s, yet it doesn’t feel like a retread at all. While The Spirit is trying to track down Dolan’s missing nephew, an Irish leprechaun is appearing among the homeless street folks, a strange island is rising in the river, and mercenaries, smugglers, the military, and Dolan’s police force are all converging with a mysterious celtic stone at the center of things.

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Ploog’s art is terrific, aided by fine inks from Dan Green, great colors by Trish Mulvihill and fine lettering by Rob Leigh. As I’ve said before, too bad this series is now over, and if it had all been this good, perhaps it wouldn’t be. Recommended!

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