One of the reasons people cling to cults or prominent figures is to find meaning in something bigger than themselves and for Laura Cummings this was both the belief of his father in the squid attacks and Rorschach’s ability to stop them.
This issue of Rorschach is strange for reasons different from the previous ones. Tom King is good at leaving red herrings in his mystery books; he did so in Batman, Mister Miracle and currently Strange Adventures. These are ways for audiences to feel they’ve solved the mystery before the end of the series reveals he’s about to pull the carpet on you, quite literally in this issue. The questions we are led to ask are: is Laura really mad or is she right? If not, who is the real villain of the show – Governor Turley, President Redford or Rorschach and the Kid themselves?
At the moment, we don’t have the answers, but there are a few theories on the table as this issue suggests. King points out that Wil Myerson and Laura have dreams of death, whether it’s the product of their respective traumas or the squid’s subtle mind control is uncertain, but that both of them have similar dreams is an odd thematic detail but important that King must include. . Second, the parallels Laura draws between Myerson and Governor Turley being the reincarnations of Rorschach and the comedian are very punchy, especially when this issue shows our unnamed detective mirroring Myerson’s path through the assassin compound – it could be something to discourage readers?
Jorge Fornes always does a fantastic job with the art in this series and it doesn’t stop there. While the final issue focused on the individual, but intertwined, stories of three men, Fornes puts King’s emphasis on the downtime between Myerson and Laura and parallels Myerson’s actions through the detective. While the tone of the past scenes with the pair of assassins has a slight sense of optimism and purpose, the current scenes with the detective are more skeptical as he tries to find evidence of how they may have committed. their crime.
While that may or may not be the case, Fornes brings Myerson and The Detective so closely together that the reader might perhaps get the idea that the idea of reincarnation may not be entirely outside the realm of possible. Their movements match almost perfectly and although Rorschach wears the mask for most of his scenes, you can almost feel that he and the detective have the same expression on their faces – questioning, pacing, looking at things from all angles.
There’s also a feeling of emptiness in the scenes with the detective, nothingness because we don’t have his opinion on the case or anything. He’s just going to go about his business looking for clues, piecing together those of Myerson and Laura last week before the crime. In contrast, the scenes with the assassins fill the empty backgrounds with word balloons and their dual presence in the rooms and environments of the precinct, they have each other, their Sense and their mission of fall back where the Detective has only himself and the investigation.
Dave Stewart’s colors never fail to arouse emotion in me. Every color palette he uses in past settings always has thematic elements and for this issue I think he chose a purple hue to show the haze of mystery at hand, subconscious fears and some sort of dignity. For the reader, it’s unclear if squid mind control really exists, but for Wil and Laura the mystery is who is under their control and how to stop their invasion. Wil has subconscious fears about their plan and Laura doubts herself and its usefulness in her mind. But overall, they believe in what they are doing. Their meaning, as mentioned earlier, is to stop the squid invasion, this gives them dignity and purpose, adding that third layer to the reason why Stewart chose to use purple for these scenes.
In the present, however, all of that is removed and replaced with earth tones and mostly browns. The detective is grounded in his reality and only seeks the facts of the situation, not a convoluted message of trying to save humanity. In his scenes, the varnish of mystery is removed and it is seen that, for him, there are only facts: Wil and Laura were brainwashed and almost committed a terrible act, but there is still more to it. investigation to discover.
Clayton Cowles lettering also continues to do Fornes’ art justice with the way they weave seamlessly into each panel with dialogue. They’re always low-key to the action of the panels and distinct enough that we always know which character is talking about. Not only that, but the sound effects he uses always pop off the page in vivid colors, from a bright red BANG to the RRRPPPP’s alternating blue and green as the detective rips the carpet to reveal a stain. unexpected blood.