Silk finally hits double digits, a truly shocking event in the midst of the Marvel Now relaunch era and the fact this character is at most, the top of the C list. So is this issue, featuring a showdown between Silk and Black Cat, something special?
Silk #10: All Things Must End
Writer: Robbie Thompson
Artist: Tana Ford
Colorist: Ian Herring
Letterer: Travis Lanham
C.Artist: Helen Chen
Editors: Nick Lowe & Devin Lewis
Editor-In-Chief: Axel Alonso
I Get Knocked Down: Our issue opens with Cindy Moon (aka Silk) and Bobbi Morse (SHIELD agent Mockingbird) developing a plan to take down Felicia Hardy (aka Black Cat, the Queenpin of crime.) Unbeknownst to Cindy, Black Cat is listening in on their conversation after discovering Silk’s true allegiance last issue. Before Cindy leaves to confront Black Cat, she is confronted by her coworkers, Lola and Rafferty, who now know she is Silk. She blows them off, along with a mysterious letter warning her to avoid Black Cat. Her spectre friend, Espectro, shows up to warn her as well but Cindy refuses to pay heed to advice from someone she does not know. She meets up with Cat, who has just stolen a new belt from Stark Industries. This belt allows her to teleport and she teleports Cindy to a shady warehouse full of Cat’s thugs. Black Cat challenges Silk to one-on-one combat and proceeds to beat the hell out of her. Fortunately, SHIELD arrives just in time, destroying Black Cat’s empire by capturing the majority of her goons. Cat escapes with Shocker, leaving Cindy to die as a building collapses on her. Espectro arrives in time to save Cindy and when she comes to, Espectro reveals himself to be her ex-boyfriend, Hector.
But I Get Up Again: Back when Silk first came out, this book was a breath of fresh air. Robbie Thompson took a character who was little more than a sex toy under Dan Slott’s pen and made her into a charming Dick Grayson-esqe crime fighter, with a lot of growing to do. The book had faults, but I was willing to forgive them for the potential the series had. I figured Thompson would iron out the kinks as he went along. And here we are now, seventeen issues in, with the same problems and a character who stopped growing in the past ten issues. So much of this volume has been centred around Cindy’s life as a double agent and the effects it has taken on her life. Even when she was not focused on Black Cat and her gang, Cindy was literally fighting the evil version of herself. So to have it all boil down to a fairly weak fight with Black Cat is disappointing. There is no big status quo change at the end of this issue, nor is there some big affirmation of Cindy being one of the great heroes of the Marvel Universe. The fight just peters out with Cindy failing against Cat once again, and Black Cat escaping to commit crime another day. This issue seems more concerned with shifting gears to the big mystery of Espectro rather than giving us a proper conclusion to the Black Cat story. Maybe that is editorial interference, wanting to keep Black Cat in the anti-hero game a little longer, but I remember the fight in volume one where Cindy beat the crap out of Black Cat and it was riveting if not wrapped up perfectly. There is no emotional intensity to this issue. It is generic in nearly every sense of the word. As for that big Espectro mystery? Who cares? The last page twist was unbelievably generic and it makes that pointless scene in last issue just a little more stupid.
There is some good moments in the issue. I actually found myself rooting for Black Cat about half way through the issue; she is the one poised to lose everything and Silk destroyed what little remained of her faith in heroes last issue. And Black Cat gets some good moments in this fight. Cindy even gets a moment or two and her interior commentary helps. The best moment has to go to jolly Jonah though, when he finds out Silk was a double agent and declares war on the media that slandered her.
This is a fairly weak issue for the art team as well. Tana Ford draws some great detailed backgrounds and plays around with some creative panelling, but there is not nearly enough of either to lift the issue up. Ford’s side profiles really needs some work and although she has drawn some solid action scenes before, this is not one of those times; most of it feels like a jumbled mess. And Black Cat’s new belt looks as hideous as Mockingbird’s mask. The only artistic thing that really jumped out at me during the fight was a panel where blood drips off Black Cat’s fist as she pummels Silk. Other than that, generic is the word of the day.
Verdict: A generic conclusion to a generic story, with some generic art and a generic as hell last page twist. I used to love this book, back in the first volume when Robbie Thompson knew he was working with a character that might not get more than six issues. Back then he used to fill the pages with story, interesting characters, and an evolving protagonist. Now everything is moving at a slow pace and Silk seems stagnant in her development. Nothing in volume two tops anything in volume one. This storyline ran for way too long with little to no payoff. Hopefully this book can find its feet again before too long.
- Lack of payoff
- Stagnant development