Comics

Issue by Issue – Claw the Unconquered #12

Writer – David Michelinie
Artist – Keith Giffen
Inker – Bob Layton
Colours – Mario Sen
Letters – Ben Oda

In the final issue of the series by David Michelinie and Keith Giffen, the book starts out like many of the previous stories with Claw travelling along and promptly being attacked by someone else, but then it delves into some deeper characterization and examines that which factors so heavily into the title. So it is that Claw defeats the attackers, makes an alliance of sort with a couple of the survivors, only to be betrayed in the middle of the night as they drug him and steal the gauntlet that protects him from the demon’s hand on his right arm. What is most fascinating about this book is that Michelinie and Giffen take Claw into unventured territory, though not in the way most would expect. Here, Claw decides that he will try to live without the gauntlet that has protected him all his life and instead, try to co-exist with his otherworldly hand. Things seem to be all right at first, but slowly, almost inexorably, the demon hand exerts its influence over Claw and he finds that his emotions are being amplified, particularly those of anger which leads to violence. It is a bit of a breakthrough for the character as he has never really looked inside of himself much as revenge was always on his mind. Now that Occulas no longer holds a place in his being, he has nothing but time amongst his own thoughts, time to discover himself. At the end of the day, the story ends with a slight bit of finality, with what one might call a happy ending, but there is something there that will make the reader think for a moment and wonder why a particular event played out the way it did. There is also the revelation that there are bigger villains at work, those that controlled Occulas and who play a part in Claw’s existence, now never to be explored in any fashion. Additionally, there were two further issues produced though they would never see print except in the Cancelled Comics Cavalcade, books that would see Claw learning to live with himself after the events of this issue and once again off on a quest with a beautiful woman leading to reclamation and being made whole. Altogether, an interesting series as a whole and definitely worthy of being collected one day should DC ever decide to do so.

4 out of 5

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