Oliver Davis reviews Spawn #234…
“The violent, soul-shattering struggle between Jim Downing and the increasingly powerful K7-Leetha threatens to overwhelm the world’s new savior. Whoever wins – Jim or the symbiote – will change the world.”
Underneath the ‘Spawn’ title on issue #234’s cover is another name, ‘Haunt’, in a similar way to the recent Batman Superman series. A bit of researching (Wikipedia props) reveals this Haunt chap as a Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead) and Todd MacFarlane (Spawn) co-creation, the alter-ego of Daniel Kilgore (cool name), a lapsed priest who has merged with the ghost of his murdered secret agent brother, Kurt. Think Firestorm, just with more Catholic guilt.
With Haunt’s presence (and debut in a Spawn comic), issue #234 is essentially a crossover. The two characters appear suited to one another, both concerned with the same religious war between Heaven and Hell.
Haunt is gifted the issue’s best segment, where he confronts the deranged killer who crucified a man’s intestines last month. The exchange between them keeps you guessing. Who is this priest guy? Is he for the Devil or the Good Guys? The answer turns out to be somewhere in between when he flips them both off. “SO DO US BOTH A FAVOUR–STOP USING HIS NAME IN VAIN. BECAUSE HE’S NOT LISTENING TO YOU. HE NEVER HAS.” Haunt defends and criticises God at the same time.
The middle way, of neither Good nor Bad, is a running thread throughout the issue, as the actual Spawn, Jim Downing, battles for control of his soul. The first few pages pose this question through a blog post, while the rest of the issue plays it out in a media conference (Downing has a spokesperson). Saint or Satan? keeps being asked.
Well, with Haunt, perhaps there is a third way.