REVIEW: ‘King Spawn,’ Issue #10

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King Spawn #10 - But Why Tho

King Spawn #10 is published by Image Comics in association with Todd McFarlane Productions. It’s written by Sean Lewis (with Todd McFarlane providing additional dialogue), illustrated by Javier Fernandez, and lettered by Andworld Design. The issue turns its focus to Spawn’s best friend Terry Fitzgerald, as he attempts to infiltrate the Exodus Foundation, where Spawn’s enemies have been gathering power and influence. Complicating matters is the revelation that Wanda Blake, Terry’s late wife and the love of Al Simmons’ life, could be brought back to life by the fallen angel Azrael.

Shifting the focus from Spawn to Terry isn’t the only deviation this issue makes. Fernandez chooses to present the issue in a black and white format with splashes of red. The red mostly shows up in Andworld Design’s lettering, as the narrative captions are bright red with white lettering – save for one or two captions where that coloring scheme is reversed. And though Spawn himself isn’t the focus of the issue, the hellish anti-hero’s presence is felt throughout the issue, with flashes of red that take the shape of his signature red cape and chains. Both Marvel and DC have experimented with a black/white/red format before, particularly Marvel’s Black, White & Blood anthologies. But it’s a format that really fits Spawn.

Where this color scheme really pops is in a series of splash pages that feature things to come. Fernandez seems to relish drawing apocalyptic spreads, as his pages feature scorched earth and massive monsters. But the crowning image—pun very much intended—has to be a full page of Spawn sitting upon his Godthrone. A row of bony protrusions extend from his head, forming a macabre crown of sorts, and the Godthrone itself is a twisted mass of flesh and skulls. I’m not exaggerating when I say that this is the most metal image Fernandez has drawn since the series began.

In changing the focus to Terry, Lewis has the chance to explore the dynamic between Terry and Spawn and how it’s shifted over the years. Both of them were longtime friends even before Al Simmons’ death and transformation, but they also loved the same woman and have different ideas on the subject of her resurrection. For Spawn, it’s the chance to finally achieve the goal he’s been seeking for years. For Terry, it marks the potential apocalypse. Lewis draws upon both men’s history to fuel the conflict between them, which also happens to play into the hands of Azrael as he wants Spawn to ascend to his “kingly” status. Lewis has made Azrael one of the most compelling foes Spawn has ever fought, and if the series continues its strong streak he may become for Spawn what the Green Goblin is for Spider-Man or Lex Luthor is for Superman.

King Spawn #10 undergoes a shift in its protagonist and its art style, more than living up to its subtitle of “black, white and red all over.” With the second story arc approaching its end, things are only getting more and more difficult for Spawn. The final page also hints that this comic may start to live up to its regal title.

King Spawn #10 is available wherever comics are sold.


King Spawn #10
4.5

TL;DR

King Spawn #10 undergoes a shift in its protagonist and its art style, more than living up to its subtitle of “black, white and red all over.” With the second story arc approaching its end, things are only getting more and more difficult for Spawn. The final page also hints that this comic may start to live up to its regal title.