REVIEW: ‘King in Black: Scream,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

King in Black Scream #1 - But Why Tho?

King in Black: Scream #1 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Clay McLeod Chapman, illustrated by Garry Brown, colored by Rachelle Rosenberg, and lettered by VC’s Cory Petit.

Scream was last seen in Planet of the Symbiotes #1 where the anti-hero was confronted by her symbiote siblings, Lasher, Phage, Riot, and Agony. After the frightening four combined to make a terrifying monster, Scream used her hell mark to obliterate them.

Now in King in Black: Scream #1 Andi Benton and her alien host have unfinished business with Demagoblin, a continuation from the Curse of Carnage: Scream issue #6. This version of the goblin however is a combination of Demagoblin and Shriek, an old villainous flame of Carnage. The brawl draws attention to the one above all, Knull. Now, Scream must battle a god in order to protect her human host Andi.

Having previously reviewed Curse of Carnage: Scream, a series that was cancelled too soon, it was brilliant to see Chapman work this narrative into and the King in Black larger plot. The issue has a sense for the character that under his stewardship, for one last time, let’s go out with a bang.

Chapman delivers an all-out action issue that highlights how Scream is a character that diversifies from the other Symbiotes given her hellfire abilities on top of alien super strength. This is also next to the fact that visually it’s just as a badass character.

Which is where Brown comes into the mix. The artist leaves little left to be imagined as he approaches each panel. The individual glances into the world of New York, currently under invasion from a sentient organic parasite hivemind intent on annihilation are filled to the brim with details.

Within the issue, Brown even got to expand on the shape-shifting form of the Symbiotes. During one particular scene, Scream morphs into a hybrid spider in order to rescue at-risk children from a raging fire. It is both terrifying and insanely exciting to witness artists really let their imaginations run wild on the page at something like this.

I was particularly thrilled with the symbiosis (pun not intended) achieved by Chapman and Brown as the visuals pair so well with the narrative and dialogue to keep the intended frantic pace.

Rosenberg’s adept color scheme adds another level of visual stimulant to the issue as the images are for the majority of the bathed in flames. The challenge that the colorist overcame was allowing each image to stand apart. Screams color tones are essentially a hybrid of fire colors, and Rosenberg captures the distinct nature of the actual fire with a sharper orange hues which gives the character a slight contrast so the character doesn’t blend in to the background.

The lettering placement from Petit was well enough placed to keep the story moving forward; however, I was a little disappointed with the design of the onomatopoeia. Often times it wasn’t quite as engaging, or dynamic to really land the emphasis of the scene. Which is a shame because Chapman’s dialogue used a lot of onomatopoeia which would have really reinforced the art.

In the end, it was a great issue and I’m left mourning the need to see more of Scream in another Marvel series. The combination of the trauma suffered from Benton paired with the power of Scream to inflict justice upon the lawless underbelly of the Marvel universe was something Chapman really delivers on. For Symbiote and Venomaniac fans out there, this is a fantastic issue to get your hands on!

King in Black: Scream issue #1 is available wherever comics are sold.

King in Black: Scream #1
4.5

TL;DR

In the end, it was a great issue and I’m left mourning the need to see more of Scream in another Marvel series. The combination of the trauma suffered from Benton paired with the power of Scream to inflict justice upon the lawless underbelly of Marvel universe was something Chapman really delivers on. For Symbiote and Venomaniac fans out there, this is a fantastic issue to get your hands on!