WICKED THINGS #4, available this Wednesday from Boom! Box continues the tale of Lottie Grote, the best underage investigator around. Sure, she’s currently serving time for a crime she didn’t’ commit, but she still loves the thrill of a case.
Lottie hasn’t had a great streak of luck, as of late. Once upon a time, she had been the best young detective around. Now she’s being ignored by the police, while supposedly being assigned to help them solve cases. How’d she got into this mess? By being framed for murder. The irony is not lost on her.
The police she’s been assigned to work with are no happier about the situation than she is. Perhaps that’s why they were so inclined to ignore her, throwing off her theories as a desperate attempt to get attention. Or freedom.
Too bad that Lottie’s quickly formed theory is more accurate than they could have ever expected. If only they had listened, they might have been ahead of this case, rather than struggling to catch up, and failing.
Wicked Things #4 is a thrilling series of events. It’s hard not to take a certain amount of pleasure in seeing Lottie proven right – even if that fact is causing more exasperation among those who are in charge of her fate.
Written by John Allison, this issue has a lot of fun with the concept of a complicated crime. You just know that it is one of the most complex schemes out there when Lottie Grote is struggling to keep up with all the twists and turns.
Twists and turns there are, in abundance. The level of them is almost comical, especially when combined with the reactions of the police (and Lottie). It makes for a nice balance between crime thriller and that classic Allison humor.
Even the moments revolving around the crime itself have shockingly sweet elements. That was not expected but certainly brought it to new heights. At the same time, adding a bit more context and motivation into the mix. Now to see how Lottie reacts, when she finally figures it all out.
The artwork within Wicked Things #4 is just as entertaining and charming as the writing it supports. Max Sarin (art), Whitney Cogar (colors), and Jim Campbell (letters) worked together here to bring such a fun plot to life.
There’s a lot to appreciate about this issue. First and foremost is that sense of timing. It’s borderline comedic, as mentioned above. And it wouldn’t have had nearly the same impact without the artwork to resolve much of the show/tell issue.
The expressions of the characters are an absolute highlight of this issue. Not just Lottie’s over the top reactions, but those of the criminals and even the police force. It heightens the experience, allowing for a moment of humor.
Meanwhile, the colors bounce back and forth between dull shades appropriate for dull city life and work, to bold and vibrant – much like little Lottie herself. It adds a certain sense of personality to an already bursting issue.
Wicked Things #4 was an intriguing issue. In many ways, it read like a crime drama, with the crime being played out with the police none the wiser (for the moment). It also read in that classic Giant Days style at times, creating a unique and memorable balance.