Issue by Issue – Dragonring #4

Writer – Guang Yap, Gordon Derry, Dave Cooper
Artist – Guang Yap, Barry Blair, Tim McEown, Dave Cooper
Letters – Eiwin Mark

The book opens with the Underlord performing some of his experiments and Kohl Drake on the way to the creature’s very castle. The trip is a hazardous one, there being all sorts of strange flora and fauna in their way and it is not long before they are attacked by an enormous monster called the Rikki-Nat. It does not look promising for the companions or their guides, but after a bold move born of desperation, it is Kohl who is standing in the end. Eventually, they make it to their destination and manage to find a way inside and it is there that they discover they are surrounded by monsters. The story is left on a cliff-hanger where it finds Kohl and those he travelled with possibly escaping and a bit of a surprise as it is discovered that Miles, the man who owned the ship Kohl arrived on, still alive. Black Waters continues with its second part in another tale full of monsters and there is an additional third story by Dave Cooper featuring a man late for a concert. Of the three, Black Waters is the weakest of the bunch, though not all that terrible. Guang Yap continues to chronicle the adventures of Kohl Drake, this issue perhaps being the best yet as it actually feels like the story is actually going somewhere and in a linear, cohesive fashion. The characters go from point A to point B and there is no mystery or scene jumps and it never feels as if there are pages missing from the book leaving readers in the dark as to what happened or what is happening. One problem that still rears its head are the motivations of the various characters, why do they do what they do and go where they go. Yes, Kohl wants to discover what his dragon ring is and what it means, but why go see the Underlord? It is never made clear and while the adventure that takes place is fine, it all just tends to be a little frustrating. The artwork from Yap is still as good as ever, but the book just never reaches that goal of being a really solid read. A better issue for sure, but still not as good as it could be.

2.5 out of 5

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