Reviewed by: Mathan “I hope there’s a sequel” Erhardt
Story Title: Baller
Written by: Gary Phillips
Penciled, Inked & Cover by: Shawn Martinbrough
Colored by: Lee Loughridge
Lettered by: Jared K. Fletcher
Editor: Will Dennis
Publisher: Vertigo/DC Comics
The issue begins with Theo’s coach taking Nate to meet the wayward player. And we finally learn what happened between Theo and Allison on the night of her murder. But while Theo is telling his tale both Irma Deuce and Paul Teddy’s goons are outside the house plotting.
Both parties attack the house. Nate and Irma team up against the murderous goons, and win, but not without some bloodshed. When the police arrive Nate finally talks the case out and puts two and two together.
The rest of the issue is Nate solving the case and tying up loose ends. I won’t spoil it for anyone. But needless to say, it’s a satisfying read.
Phillips does a good job of wrapping up various plots, while still leaving some open for a sequel. Not every mystery is solved, but the main one is put to rest. I was kind of disappointed that Irma didn’t play a larger role, but again, I hope that will be rectified if a sequel does come into play.
Visually Martinbrough stays par for the course. He plays with shadows and utilizes them to the fullest to create intrigue and toy with character. The flashbacks are very well rendered, as are the acts of violence. Loughridge has also done an outstanding job of coloring the series. Fletcher’s sound effects are also well done, the don’t distract from the action, but add much to the story.