Deathblow # 6
Writers: Brandon Choi & Jim Lee
Artist: Tim Sale
Letterer: Todd Klein
Colorist: Linda Medley
Cover Date: June 1994
This week, I continue my look into the work of Tim Sale by looking back at Deathblow # 6.
One of the cornerstone characters from the WildStorm Universe, Deathblow (alias Michael Cray) was a Navy SEAL after his parents her slain by terrorists but soon after, he was transferred to an International Operations team called Team 7 and is known as a Special Forces operative. Halfway through the series, Michael was diagnosed with a brain tumor, and with that, he wanted to atone for all the people he killed during the missions he went on but he managed to cross paths with The Black Angel who manages to awake a demon of sorts who’s only purpose is to kill a young boy with miraculous abilities.
This issue pretty much plays out like an overwhelming straight-to-video action movie from the 90s; I know I tend to point that out with many of the reviews I do when it pertains to 90s comics (Particularly Image Comics) but this one really lives up to that honor, whenever or not it’s a good thing is totally up to the readers. Like most Image Comics that weren’t “Spawn”, the plots were all over the place which I felt either helped enhance the story or just gave the readers something to get invested in since they actually bought the issue. One of the standouts is Tim Sale’s art as during this time he really brought out the grittiness of the story while also managing to bring his own unique style to this issue since it feels like the colorist (Linda Medley) tried her best to make Sale’s art more in sync with Jim Lee’s style, but for the most part, Sale’s style definitely stands out that shows how he began growing as a storyteller.
Deathblow (Especially this issue) feels like an overhyped snack that was really good when you try it out for the first time but quickly loses its appeal once you’ve had it too many times so it’s a real shame because I feel that most of the WildStorm titles for that era could have been better but the erratic plotting that plagued most of the titles was indeed their downfall, but I can also, in the same breath, give them their flowers as some of the artists went on to bigger titles and got the opportunity to shine at both Marvel and DC; I can honestly say that if it wasn’t for Tim Sale’s artwork gracing the pages, Deathblow would have been D.O.A., regardless of Jim Lee and Brandon Choi as the primary writers.
Well, that’s it for me this week. Thanks for sticking around and I will see you all next time.