Story: Cullen Bunn
Art: Jesus Hervas
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
What They Say:
A loathsome traitor from the past seeks to turn the denizens of the Dark Ark against Khalee and her family. But this fiend brings an even more terrifying promise—that the floodwaters will rise once more!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Dark Ark: After the Flood draws to a close with this installment and is hopefully getting us in place for another miniseries to come. There are few projects where I feel demanding of creators but I want to see this team or the original team back for more because I’m thoroughly enjoying what Cullen Bunn has created here in this take on the flood and the larger storyline. There’ve been a lot of interesting twists, turns, and expansions along the way that keep me wanting to see more of it in this time and in the years/centuries/millennia to come. Jesus Hervas has been great on this run as well, leaning into the design work that Juan Doe kicked the original off with but maintaining his own style as well so that you can see that it’s clearly his work. There’s a great continuity between the two but not an identical look.
The story with this moves back and forth a few times and it blends a little too well at times, which made for some confusion and going back a page or two. The material taking place in the past with Shrae and Khalee makes clear that she has a larger use in the grand scheme of things and his lessons to her have an even darker sense about them now. Watching as she discovers a bird singing in a nest, he reveals how it’s a deceiver and its true intent is dark and dangerous. But she’s still just enthralled by it songs, which is made worse later when she discovers a cat has killed it simply because it could. That’s a harsh lesson as it wasn’t even for food but it’s at this point that she discovers, and likely forgets for some time, that she can bring things back to life. That poor bloodied bird, however.
In the present, Khalee is definitely asserting herself in several ways. She’s realizing her own power, and those that have fallen around her, while the sorcerer elsewhere is frustrated at the monsters for killing all the humans as they were part of what was needed for Khalee to be in the right frame of mind for her eventual sacrifice. This “side” of thing has its own plan but we’re seeing Khalee looking to take it in her own route, which may be the true route of the darker beings orchestrating things, and her revival of her sister Rea really points to the dark arts becoming a key piece of this new world. Seeing her essentially take command of the monsters as she does, knowing that Noah’s ships are closing in on this place, and sensing the rain again, it’s a big moment of culmination that has a real sense of dread and power about it that leaves you hanging. Especially since the final panel says “End.”
There will be more, right? There has to be. I don’t mind a series of miniseries or even some one-shots here and there to space things out and tell the tales of this time and place. But there has to be more coming because this work is just that good. This incarnation wasn’t quite as strong as the first but it’s working a different storyline and a lot of what we get here is setup for these final pages so that it can move forward again with a clearer head and vision. If we do get more, I’mt totally up for Hervas coming back, though I’ll be quite honest and say that I’d love to see Juan Doe return as well now that his series has finished. But I’m also game for him doing more of his own original works. What a series of choices! Regardless, Cullen Bunn has put together a story and concept that I crave more of and this miniseries delivered a lot of great stuff and has me wanting more. That’s a really rare thing these days, to be honest, so I’ll be hopeful.
Age Rating: 17+
Released By: AfterShock Comics
Release Date: July 29th, 2020