Written by: Rick Remender Art by: Sean Murphy Colors by: Matt Hollingsworth Published by: Image Comics
Tokyo Ghost Is A Visual Feat Of Swords and Fury
Issue 4 of Tokyo Ghost delves into the troubled past of Led, the unstoppable psycho biker cop. Add Led’s sultry partner to the mix, along with a vengeful gang from Led’s past, and the scene should be set for a thrilling, rolling, rumble set to a ‘feudal Japan’ backdrop. The story on this issue is sadly minimal, with little beyond the confrontation and combat; the protagonists don’t particularly bring anything at all in terms of the story and you are left with a distinct feeling that #4 of Tokyo Ghost is a filler issue. The central characters do have a certain appeal, though they don’t have much opportunity to expand on their stories here. In terms of their development we are no further on from the previous issue. The conflict in the issue relates to Led’s history, and while it should add to his character, it doesn’t; it somehow manages to avoid adding to the dramatic flow of the book. That’s a missed opportunity in terms of the writing. While the story does feel rather light on substance, the disappointment is offset by the art of Sean Murphy. From the cover, through the balletic violence, and to the conclusion, the art is delightful. The mix of future tech elements melds beautifully with the feral landscape. The action is very easy on the eye, flowing with cinematic style.
If the story had been more fulfilling Tokyo Ghost could have been something really special. As it is the book is visually appealing, with artistic depth and style, and that’s easily the best part of this issue. Had there been more than a smattering of interplay between the central characters, had the drama landed with more of an impact, the effect would have been far more satisfying. With any luck the next installment will play on the strengths of the book: the art is fabulous, the central pairing have a certain psychotic charm, the future setting in Tokyo Ghost does hold the interest. There is a danger that you can slip into all style and no substance; that the story suffers due to inattention. If Remender and Murphy can ignite this story, really give it some fire; then it could easily become a fun book.