Review: Malignant Man #4 (of 4)


From the start, the premise of this book was a bit thin. A man seemingly dying of terminal cancer discovers that not only does he not have cancer, but that the “tumor” in his brain is actually a vastly powerful alien symbiote that gives him tremendous powers both mental and physical. A miracle and a dream  I’m sure many afflicted have shared in one form or another. This, as these things tend to do, leads him into a world he had no idea existed full of super-powered killers and super scientists determined to rule the world, or save it, depending on which of the two you’re talking about.

Issue three was the “all-out action issue” as the main character Alan and his female handler (assigned by the semi-mysterious Dr. Ezra to guide and teach him) spent most of the issue cutting people in two and gunning them down while using more ammo than most gun stores stock. As I said at the time, while I’m not opposed to full-out action issues of books, this seemed overly bloody and gratuitous while adding little to the story.

In the current issue, the last of the series, we’re treated to several more pages of the same kind of action. This time, however, it felt like filler until I realized something I should have about three issues ago: it’s written like a summer action movie, which makes sense as plotter James Wan is a Hollywood film director. The formula is: a bit exposition at the beginning of the series, some action, a bit more exposition, and a crap load of explosions until we reach the conclusion for a quiet page. We’re even given the set up for the sequel in the last panel of the book.

While the first issue of the book was interesting enough that I came back, I became increasingly disappointed in the book as it continued to become more fluff and filler, less story. The art actually improved over the course of the series, and Piotr Kowalski has a bright future in comics ahead of him, but the story got worse and this final issue has left me disappointed. If a sequel is in the works, I don’t think I’ll be reading it.