Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Review: Preacher: Salvation

When we last parted company with Jesse Custer, he had survived a nuclear charged showdown in the desert with the evil forces of The Grail, only to fall from an airplane. Somehow he lived through the fall, only to wake up a month later missing an eye, and his memory of how he survived. Not wanting to spoil too much important plot stuff, I'll just say that he has also temporarily parted ways with his usual traveling companions, Tulip and Cassidy. Not surprisingly, after going through such trials, Jesse is a man in need of some quiet reflection, Which brings him to the town of Salvation, Texas.

Salvation has a bunch of problems, but most of them can be traced back to local meat baron Odin Quincannon. Before too long, Jesse has made many of the town's problems his own, as he becomes the town's Sheriff. The new sheriff and Quincannon quickly become enemies and their mutual hated soon spills over into all out war. Custer may seem like the ideal guy to take on the corrupted and violent Qunicannon, as he seemingly has nothing to lose, but as he becomes more involved in the town of Salvation, and makes connections with it's citizens, he discovers that he has a lot to protect.

Though the plot of Preacher: Salvation seems to take a break from the main story line, yet I felt that this is one of the strongest Preacher trades yet. Ennis seems to be at his best when he is writing about strange, creepy, weird, and violent characters and situations... and there is plenty of all that to be had here.

Once agian, a major strength of the graphic novel was Ennis' ability to build interesting, and complex characters. Odin Qunicannon is one of the more memorable characters to populate the Preacher world so far, and his rivalry with Jesse is extremely entertaining. Ennis' character building skills don't just stop with Quincannon though, as he populates the town of Salvation with a variety of colorful and interesting characters, and by virtue of that, the town comes to life.

Despite the fact that this is one highly entertaining and action packed graphic novel, I couldn't shake the sense that Jesse's stop in Salvation is sort of the calm before the storm. Everything seems to be gathering energy for one mean assault. There is only two volumes of Preacher left, and I got the sense that this may be my last chance to catch my breath.

Though the past couple volumes suffered a slight dip in quality and entertainment value, Salvation recovers quite nicely. Steve Dillon's artwork is as solid as ever, and the story itself was more entertaining than the last two volumes. I can't wait to see what is in store for the rest of the series.

Grade: A-

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