A gelatinous throwdown is the big fight in this issue, as Proof goes up against the towering minion of his enemy. However, the real action takes place with tiny humans on the ground. A turning point for one of the main characters is horrific and scary and may just impact the future for everyone else in a terrible way. But only if played to a real and finite conclusion.
Proof fighting with a ‘Ningen,’ a jellyfish type creature, is a good frame for the issue and serves as a distraction for the characters and the reader. It’s a decent fight, peppered with meaningful conversation between Proof and his enemy Mi-Chen-Po, but ultimately it’s just a distraction for us all. It lends the issue a little more of a feeling that we are in the middle of an arc; one aspect is propelled forward but the next step is saved for next month.
Ginger becomes the real hinge in this issue as her fight with a mildly deranged ex becomes heartfelt while ending in a fatal manner at the same time. Ginger becomes a bad ass and exacts the sort of revenge you want to see an attacked woman dish out. A shame the retribution only comes because of a brainwashed warpath. This is a violent direction that is going to affect characters both good and bad.
Rossmo’s ‘ningen’ has a mild Dr Zoidberg feel to it, but in a more translucent and creepy way. However, it’s the moments of violence with Ginger that resonate. One panel, with the glint off her sword illuminating her cold expression, is a perfect moment. Zigarelli knows where to put his color detail, and where to leave it off. He acts in union with Rossmo’s art to make each page interesting and to push the narrative forward.
The ending here is left inconclusive because we need to wonder if the violence on display is played for keeps. If so, the world of “Proof” might just be very different going forward. But this sort of twist could be just what our happy and insulated hero needs to take on Mi-Chen-Po. If not, then it would be a big let down and this issue would count just a bit less. Only one month will tell, but without that knowledge this issue is still fun and pretty shocking. Also, the issue gets top marks for great back matter, as usual. A delight every issue.