Indie Comic Review: Archer & Armstrong #4 (with preview)

Archer & Armstrong wrap up their first arc in style, with explosions, revelations, mayhem, and a few secrets revealed. It is the perfect end to what has been a raucous adventure and perfectly sets the stage for the next adventure.

Archer & Armstrong make their stand against The Sect high in the Himalayas. All the pieces of the Boon have been assembled! But, is the Sect willing to pay the price for immortality?

Fred Van Lente tries his best to give a recap which would allow a new reader to pick up this book without having read any other story. Eventually he throws up his hands and points out that this is part four of a story arc and is probably not the best place to jump in. However, I will say that if this is your first issue of Archer & Armstrong, there is enough happening in the issue to allow you to follow the events of the issue, and inspire you to go back and pick up the previous issues.

Van Lente delivers a balance of action and dialogue which moves the story forward and keeps the tension high. It is not clear up until the very end whether or not A&A are going to be triumphant. Even when the smoke clears it is obvious that there may be more than one point of view of who is the victor.

The script for this issue finally fully delivers on the promise of the buddy action adventure. While the other issues have been fun to read and I have enjoyed getting to know the characters, I was not sold on the odd couple buddy aspect of it. But with this issue, Van Lente solidifies that relationship through the forced dependence of Armstrong on Archer.

Clayton Henry’s art is once again top-notch. He sells the emotions in this issue as much as he sells the action. Both Archer and Armstrong go through a whole range of emotions, as do many of the supporting characters. His facial expressions for each delivers note-perfect accompaniment for the script.

Archer & Armstrong has rocketed to the top of my list of books. This is especially remarkable given that I was nonplussed by the debut issue and on the fence by the end of the second. I had expected to make a decision by the end of the arc as to whether or not I would stick around for more. Given the strong finish to this arc and the exciting set-up for the next, there is no question in my mind that I will be sticking with Archer & Armstrong for quite some time!

Archer & Armstrong #4 is in shops tomorrow.

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