Poser #4 is the finale of the punk rock slasher series from writer Matt Miner, illustrator Clay McCormack, colorist Doug Garbark, letterer Taylor Esposito, and published by Waxwork Comics. Previously, Whitney and Ash witnessed and barely escaped a deadly attack from the Poser killer at a concert. Following the attack, Whitney is in the hospital recovering while dealing with terrifying nightmares of the mysterious Poser killer. Meanwhile, Ash and her friends attend an event in protest of the Poser but things quickly go from bad to nightmarishly worse.
A good twist requires set up and clues that hint to the possibility of it. A good twist is clever with enough build-up to be suspenseful and surprising. Without spoiling anything, the ending of Poser was not a good twist. Instead, this issue felt rushed. There was little to no clues really given in previous issues that would logically explain this ending. While I understand this is a slasher story, I expected more considering the character development and growth within the last issue specifically.
Similarly, there are moments where this story wants to make a larger statement on society. This is seen by Whitney wearing an “I can’t breathe” shirt, the last words of Eric Garner, an unarmed Black man who died after being placed in a chokehold by a white police officer. It can also be seen by the comic’s overall message of the effects of bullying. However, because of the way this issue was rushed, neither seem to matter or impact the larger statement of the story at hand. Horror is a fantastic outlet to speak on the fears and insecurities of humanity and while Poser attempted to do so, it comes up short.
Miner had previously crafted interesting but slightly one-dimensional characters that this issue seemingly ignored. Additionally, since the twist was so bizarre and unfounded, the sequential deaths felt like shallow shock value. The issue is mostly carried by McCormack’s art and Garbark’s colors.
The main climax of this book is a series of panels with very little dialogue and a lot of action. While the overall look of the panel is fantastic, the lack of plot doesn’t do Poser any favors. However, the neon palette shines within the pages and helps create the punk aesthetic the book has. But even with its 1980s punk nostalgia, color palette, and artwork, this conclusion could not be saved.
In all actuality, this comic series should have been more than four issues. If readers were given more time to unravel this mystery it could have been fantastic but since it was so rushed the conclusion just falls flat.
Poser #4 is out now in comic stores everywhere and online.
But even with its 1980s punk nostalgia, color palette, and artwork, this conclusion could not be saved. In all actuality, this comic series should have been more than four issues. If readers were given more time to unravel this mystery it could have been fantastic but since it was so rushed the conclusion just falls flat.