A merciless and unstoppable army calling themselves “the Chosen” have invaded Arcadia, starting a full-fledged war with Carmine Tango’s forces. They’re looking for something . . . or someone. X has recovered from Tango’s torment and is ready to pound some answers out of both parties!
BETTER OFF DEAD, PART 2
Since he escaped from Tango in the previous issue, X goes to an abandoned police station which conveniently happens to have a stash of seized weapons and ammo that the previous force somehow left behind, and which only he knows about. He prepares to go on a crusade, wiping out Tango’s forces but soon discovers that someone else has the very same idea. A squad of heavily armed blond White men in identical uniforms is going around getting into shootouts with Tango’s men. X captures one and tries to torture some information out of him, but the man is highly resistant to pain, just keeps spouting nonsense about working for “The Archon,” mixed with religious jargon, as if he’s on a holy mission.
Meanwhile the astrologist that Tango kidnapped back in issue #10 comes up with his own plan to get free, writing a bogus horoscope that convinces Tango to release and recruit The Dogs of War to go after these new killers, lying to them that they’re working for X, whom the Dogs want revenge on for taking them down. During a big gun battle X arrives with some deadly new ammunition, and starts blowing all the bad guys away and then publicly announces that Aracdia is HIS city, and that he’s ready for The Archon. TO BE CONTINUED
Writer Duane Swierczynski just keeps raising the stakes with this series. Just when you think he can’t possibly make things any more dramatic, he does just that in each issue. Randy Atkins and Andy Owens step in for Eric Nguyen on the pencils and inks this issue, doing a great job, although their style is a little “cleaner” than the gritty nature of this series, which Nguyen’s style compliments better. But it’s still good enough for me to give this issue it’s standard Chacebook rating of FIVE STARS.