Story: Elliot Kalan
Art: Andrea Mutti
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
What They Say:
The horrifying ride of the Death Train has come to its final stop, and Gina Greene is now the most hated woman in New York, scapegoated for the blood on the city’s hands. Life goes on, and no one has learned the right lesson – just as Maniac Harry rears his masked face again! Meanwhile, little girl survivor Lena becomes obsessed with the one clue that might lead to Harry’s defeat – but will anyone believe her?
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
With the way this issue plays out for a chunk of it, I was glad to learn that there’s at least one more series ahead for this property. Elliot Kalan has had a lot of fun with the book and while some of it may be a little too decompressed at times, it allowed for some really good action to unfold and that gave Andrea Mutti a chance to shine bright with his artwork. It had the right kind of gritty to it while still playing within the larger bright and clean look of parts of the city and the new train so that the contrast was perfect. Kalan let the visuals take dominance when needed but also knew just enough to inject into the characters so that they’re more than just props in the story as well.
With the deals having been made after the incident on the train, Gina’s taking the blame and keeping the position in order to continue the hunt, even though our maniac has not been seen since then. She’s doing her best to figure things out and why he reacted to that one particular stop like he did, but that’s a mystery for the future. We see how she handles being on the news where the talking head is more of a cutthroat looking for a body to blame everything on and a woman certainly fits the mold for this type. She’s able to take it all because she knows what happened and why it played out like it did, and that they saved a few of them in the end. Zelda, for her part, has gotten the commendation and is a hero and suffering no blame, but still gets all the ire of the precinct while they have to play nice with her after all that has happened. She knows all of it and just loves that they have to play nice like this and it fits perfectly.
While the two kids survive, we only see Lena as she’s gone to live with her grandmother who could only take one of them in. She’s suffering real nightmares but her grandmother is oblivious to a lot of this and is from a generation/perspective that doesn’t view much of kids in needing help or being listened to. When she remembers things that might be of help to Zelda, she does try to get a call through but is reprimanded by her grandmother and forced to watch more propaganda broadcast material that’s just disturbing in how it plays out. The child is suffering, the adults are suffering, the killer is presumed dead but is still out there, and those in power continue to try to push through their agendas and their disdain for anything not like them. It’s no wonder that the maniac will resurface.
I’m definitely glad that there’s another run coming for this and I continue to be hopeful with the series of miniseries approach that AfterShock seems like they’re close to trying more of here and there that I think is ideal for these kinds of projects. Kalan’s done a really solid job in making this a tense and engaging series that allowed the action to be the highlight for a lot of it. I really liked the cast and this final issue of this series is like an epilogue that made me want to scream at far too many characters and to pay attention to what’s going on. It’s really well done with some great artwork and a sense of time and place that connects in a really neat way. Here’s to the next trip on the death train!
Age Rating: 15+
Released By: AfterShock Comics
Release Date: June 9th, 2021