Nun Like Her: Sister Mercy #4

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Sister Mercy #4

Sister Mercy is a Kickstarter book written by Corey Hardiman and drawn by Ricardo Silva. This is the fourth issue and, while I have not read anything of the first three in this series, I was delightfully not confused at all by where the story began. No, not because there was a giant wall of text telling me the entire history of the character from the week before her origin (because there was none), but because of the context of the story and the natural flow of dialogue between the characters -- which also didn't do a data dump on the readers. You're in. You see. You know. That's what a good comic book series is supposed to do, make the reader comfortable with coming into the book whether it's the first issue or the fiftieth.

The main character, Mercy, is a sort of Joan of Arc trope; she's a nun in a Mad Max type of future, where resources are hoarded and zombies roam the land. In this particular story, "Inferno," we find Mercy arriving at a walled-off oil refinery, driven by her shady acquaintance, Benny. But she's not there for oil. The refinery is occupied by the forces of a giant of a man known as The Dane, and the resource they collect is women -- women they strip, keep in cages, use for... well, you can imagine, and then, eventually...

Barbecued. By flamethrowers.

None of this frightens Mercy, however, as she continues her quest to find her mising mother. She's not scared, because she's got God on her side. Or rather on her inside. She's driven by His voice that only she can hear, and whether it is real or is a manifestation of schizophrenia is left for the reader to determine.

While Mercy is a skilled fighter, she does have her limitations. The fight between her and The Dane is full of action but ultimately ends with Mercy chained nude to a stake, awaiting a fiery fate to end her.

Meanwhile, in another part of Mercy's world, the witch Sybil continues to grow her ranks, summoning demons to possess the bodies of her victims. So there is a true supernatural element to this series, which makes the voices hears by Sister Mercy all the more possibly plausible.

Hardiman delivers a fast-paced, compelling dystopian world with a lot of action and a talent for idealized natural dialogue. The usual editorial slip-ups that frequently plague independently published titles were nearly non-existent. The interior artwork is also amazing, with Silva delivering professional quality pages evocative in places of Mike Kaluta and Jerry Bingham.

The book does have some gore, and uncensored nudity, which would earn it a hard "R" rating if it were a movie. But damned, it's a fun adventure and a thrill to look at. This reviewer will be watching for the eventual trade paperback collection so I can catch up on the issues I've missed to date. Strongly recommended.

(displayed cover by Marco de Archangelis)

4.5 / 5.0