Artifacts #23 Review

The conclusion to this two-part arc is here, but does it send our hero down a path he won’t soon return from?  Read on to find out.

The official description from Image:


Tom Judge’s training as a priest did not prepare him for the horrors he’s seen as a special investigator for the FBI. But Tom’s current case – an unholy combination of the supernatural and murder most foul – is beyond anything he’s ever experienced, and even the powerful Artifact he wields, the Rapture, won’t be enough to save him.

Tom Judge has had his ups and downs since and before the Top Cow Universe had its rebirth. Whether he’s going to Hell or playing his hand at being a person who happens to wield an ancient artifact he always seems to get stuck with the short end of the stick, and this latest arc is no different.

Whether you’re new to this series or not rest assured that the lead writer, Ron Marz once again delivers an outstanding story.  The author has really found his groove when it comes to shaping shared ongoing continuity but he still manages to deliver on smaller more nuanced tales.  At this point there’s no reason to read too deeply into this narrative but he offers character development, a strained friendship and an exorcism all while guiding the audience to an ending that sees an innocent man caught in the crossfire of forces he doesn’t comprehend.  In short, this was another incredibly engaging jaunt.

When it comes to modern comic book artists Stjepan Sejic is easily one of the best in the business.  His expertly realized panels deliver a photo quality that’s chock-full of distinct visualizations.  From the characters themselves to the monsters they fight he finds a way to deliver an incredible amount of detail while giving believable life to these somewhat complex narratives.  Whether it’s a slow moment or one that calls for high action, the talented collaborator shows a level of care that makes every single issue he touches a must buy.

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Artifacts #23 is simply a hard hitting release that offers a somber but fitting conclusion.  Recommended.


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