The Silencer #9 is one, big, action romp unlike anything you’ve seen in this title to date, so you better take cover!
I’m going to be honest, following the events of The Silencer #8, this is not the direction – overall – that I expected this chapter to take. With Wishbone body swapping Silencer and Quietus, I fully thought Dan Abnett would take a suspenseful, psychological route with Quietus by placing him near or with Honor’s family. Yeah, you could say that it would be the obvious or cliché approach, but it could also be interesting if done well! So, imagine how bummed I was when I discovered this never happens!
To be fair, that doesn’t mean the issue itself is bad, just different from what I expected. As it turns out, this chapter is another action-heavy issue. We’ve had issues in the past that from the word “go,” are nothing but one huge brawl and never let up. This is the same. The difference here is that rather than having groups fighting groups, nearly half of the issue is just Silencer and Quietus slugging it out!
Patrick Zircher deserves a lot of credit because the fights are executed incredibly well! From panel to panel, that action contains a strong, believable flow, and you can feel the energy coming off of the page. If you watched WWE growing up, then you’d expect good ol’ J.R. to classify this as a “slobber knocker!” As entertaining as the fight is though, I couldn’t help but think, “Why are they fighting?” I mean, I get it to a degree… These two hate each other, but they also have a common enemy, have both been attacked by an outside force, and have swapped bodies (rendering the murder of one, a practical suicide for the murderee)… It simply doesn’t add up to me, and as a result, the fighting lasts way too long.
In addition to this, the body swap becomes a little confusing at times. I would find myself getting into a rhythm with the book while reading, forget for a second about the body swap, and have to remind myself that it wasn’t a mistake from the letterer. I know this is on me and not a problem with the execution of the book itself, but generally speaking, if it crept up on me from time to time, it will most likely creep up on someone else as well. Plus, I just don’t feel like Abnett took advantage of what would make the body swap interesting, nor do I think he will based on the progression of this chapter.
Eventually, the book loops in other characters and threats into the fray. Wishbone is peppered in throughout the book, and it’s clear from the beginning that she’s preparing other offenses against Silencer and Quietus in addition to the body swap. I love this on a conceptual level because her magical background opens up The Silencer to a whole new world of potential. If I have one complaint about Wishbone, it’s that Abnett gives his hand away by overselling his foreshadowing, and that destroys some of the anticipations of the book.
Gunn also makes his way into the chaos, adding a new variable to the encounter. He and his men have numbers on their side, and it looks like the altercation between Silencer and Quietus is all but done because of it… And then the book changes drastically! Wishbone makes another move, and everything turns to chaos!
Wishbone turns her freaking servant into a giant Godzilla-like creature! We’ve got a freaking dinosaur-monster in a book that – aside from people having tech modifications – has been mostly grounded. This is crazy!… But awesome too!
The book ends with a tease, and I honestly have no idea what direction the book will take from here! Everything you thought you knew about The Silencer has changed, and anything is possible!
- You’re in a Freaky Friday mood.
- There’s magic.
Overall: The Silencer #9 is a fast-paced, action-packed issue! New and interesting variables are introduced that take the book in a completely different direction than we’ve seen in the past, opening us up to potential stories we may have never thought possible. Despite the fun action, the body swap between Silencer and Quietus doesn’t necessarily live up to my expectations, and if it lasts much longer, it might overstay its welcome.