A coherent story and read, Prophet #32 shows the benefits of a focused cast, setting and narrative. That said, it still manages to explore and display its wide and fascinating universe, with revelations and potential links to the past. It doesn’t get in its own way, offering a compelling story first before anything else.
First, the official description from Image:
The Prophet clone with the Dolemantle from issues 21-23, New Father Prophet returns to Earth. As Prophet brothers from all over the universe assemble he must prove his worth among their ranks.
This issue opens up with what is becoming a familiar site; Old Man Prophet, Diehard, Hiyonhoiagn and Jaxon (and the inclusion of the recently added Rein-East) on a space ship. Its a simple touch, yet it gives the title a sense of stability. That said, things seldom stay nice and simple for long with Prophet.
A few pages in, and readers are already treated to a typically outlandish and unique landscape, rich with its own culture and design. Prophet, at times, is more about the world and setting than the plot, but Prophet #31 strikes a decent balance. It even shows a sense of humor; albeit rather crude toilet humor, but some will argue that’s the best kind.
Furthermore, there’s a few threads here that keen readers might want to pick up on. Without spoiling anything, this issue firmly ties the setting into previous Image titles, rather than simply borrowing the key character or theme. Whilst it will certainly please long time fans, it gives the title new light, by joining what is (mostly) a serious science-fiction piece with the superhero themes found in other titles. It may be a rather poignant note in itself, but its all part of Prophet‘s charm, taking in strange elements and giving them a new perspective; one that isn’t always expected.
Additionally, there’s also a small amount of character development. Whether its the simple interactions between the group shown briefly between the pages, or the actual attention shown on the conflicted Diehard, there’s a real sense of growing characters. In a title full of dead planets, lost civilizations and ages gone, this is more important than ever.
Finally, Prophet #33 also ends on a surprisingly satisfactory cliffhanger. There’s just enough suspense to keep you interested, the narration itself teasing more information than the artwork. All in all, it shows progression for the title, and a coherent follow-up in the next issue is something to keep an eye out for.