Written by: Story Faerber
Art by: Scott Godlewski & Ron Riley
Sometimes when a new title debuts and the first issue blows you away you hope not to be disappointed by the end of the first arc. You’ll know within the first five issues if this new comic book is worth keeping on your pull list or not. Luckily, Copperhead #5 by Jay Faerber, Scott Godlewski and Ron Riley needn’t worry because they’ve conjured up an intriguing and enthralling first arc that ends on a satisfying note while leaving the door open for more drama. This one is a keeper.
This concluding chapter opens up where the last one left off. Sheriff Bronson and Ishmael are in a tense stand-off as she continues to investigate the murders of the Sewell family. It’s an impressive opening sequence that develops through great visuals and action. The panels within panels marked with pained facial expressions and as always, wonderful color schemes from Riley really do Godlewski’s beautiful lines justice. Throughout the series the artists have done an incredible job of combining sharp lines with lush, bright colors that accentuates this sci-fi world with eye-popping contrast and semi-realistic contours. Faerber is one lucky writer to have these extremely talented visionaries at his disposal.
So is Ishmael friend or foe? Is he the good-hearted “artie” that helped Bronson’s son out of the Badlands or a conniving stone-cold killer who stole the Sewell’s family heirloom? All of these questions get answered thus rewarding loyal readers for their patience and getting a bonafide murder mystery that satisfies.
Faerber has shown an impressive level of storytelling discipline in plotting Copperhead where nothing is rushed and every nuance is explored. You follow the clues along with Bronson and Boo and make deductions based on the evidence. It’s a sci-fi procedural that isn’t interested in cheap tricks or cliches.
It’s now placed itself to expand even further in its next arc and really let loose now that we know who the characters are. This year should be a big one for the series and its creators. Copperhead is a must buy if fantastic art and intelligent storytelling is your kind of thing.