Issue by Issue – Rom #16

rom16Writer – Bill Mantlo
Artist – Sal Buscema
Inker – Sal Buscema
Colours – Ben Sean
Letters – Michael Higgins

In the first of two stories, a reporter is determined to get to the bottom of the menace called Rom and just how the town of Clairton figures into it.  For Killburn, that story is going to be as hard to obtain as a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow.  Last issue the Dire Wraith threat was exposed and Rom’s reputation expunged and now the town is clearly on his side, protecting him and helping him out when they can.  When some children accidentally wake up the Watchwraith, it could mean the end of everything.  In the second story featuring the Spaceknights, Rom, Terminator and Starshine are patrolling when they come across a Galadorian ship being attacked by Wraith Drakillars.  After saving them, Terminator realizes that they are infected with the Wraith plague and there can only be one possible outcome.  Bill Mantlo and Sal Buscema give us the most bang for our buck with two fantastic stories.  Both are quite good but the interesting thing about them is how one ends on a hopeful and feel-good note and the other a little hopeless and depressing.  It also goes on to illustrate how long the war against the Dire Wraiths has lasted and gives that happy ending in the first tale new meaning.  A war between two races that has gone on for hundreds of years is not a good thing and it shows that any peace Rom finds now is momentary as the Spaceknights have obviously not found a way to defeat the Wraiths definitively.  In all though, this was a great issue.  It showed how the townspeople were ultimately decent people in the end and that sometimes, good wins out.

4.5 out of 5

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