Four and half months after the series debut, “Inhuman” #3 hit the stands, sporting the final collection of Joe Madureira’s art on this title. At least for now. Writer Charles Soule is still in place, and he provides a temporary pause for this series, closing out the inaugural adventure of this All-New Marvel NOW! title. This issue is filled with plenty of character moments for the NuHumans — the humans whose connection to and abilities of the Inhuman lineage were unleashed following the Terrigen bomb — as well as intriguing twists in the structures and alliances of the opposing sides.
Those sides clash together in an eleven-page battle between the forces of New Attilan under Medusa’s direction and Lash’s NuHumans in Orollan. Soule leaves the finale open enough for future animosity between the two camps, but he also lays out the cause for which Medusa is rallying Inhumans and NuHumans alike. The nine pages prior to the fight afford Soule enough space to describe the two camps and the primary personalities in each. There are way more Inhumans than Soule touches upon, but those presented here all have a chance to shine a bit, whether Soule affords them dialogue or calls upon their powers. Those with dialogue deliver more than a sentence or two, in a nicely packed story from Soule that keeps letterer Clayton Cowles plenty busy.
Madureira’s art is heavy with shadow and light on backgrounds. Colorist Marte Gracia has his back, though, and balances out the absence of scenery nicely, cobbling together shapes and textures to provide the residents of “Inhuman” #3 with space to exist whenever the detail surrounding them gets too light. Madureira’s style is nicely matched to the tale, as his exaggerated anatomy fits the exaggerated proportions and composure of the Inhumans and NuHumans. Additionally, his pencils persevere through Gracia’s colors throughout, giving the characters texture and form. He doesn’t have enough time with Medusa or Triton in this issue to satisfy my preference, but at least those characters look dynamic when he does draw them in.
Soule and Madureira do a fine job balancing the NuHumans and the Inhumans, giving each of the primary characters a role or a line in “Inhuman” #3. Lash, Inferno, Lineage and Korvostax have the most panel time, with Medusa and Gorgon close behind. The end of this issue brings the establishment of a mission and a purpose — vague though it is — for Medusa’s followers. They now have a reason for being and a need to hone their skills and abilities. It’s a shame that this series lost so much momentum due to extended intervals between issues, but perhaps it will find its way into a tighter schedule with Ryan Stegman coming on board. One thing is for certain, though: Soule has just barely scratched the surface of building a new world for the Inhumans with plenty more to come.