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Hollow Heart 3 Main

"Hollow Heart #3" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by Vault Comics


Written and lettered by Paul Allor
Illustrated by Paul Tucker
2021, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on May 5th, 2021


Mateo's plan to free EL from his prison is underway, but you know what they said about the best laid plans of mice and men. Things go haywire when EL can't walk out of this place without a little revenge. The people here have treated him awfully, torturing him to the point where he wants to end his own life. He can't let that stand, but is it worth his freedom?

The action is raised in Hollow Heart #3 as this escape plan kicks into high gear. Throughout it all, the great character work sings. There's so much that's implied without having to outright say it, like the anguish EL is going through. You can feel the rage inside him, like he wants to just scream until he can't anymore.

Click images to enlarge

Writer Paul Allor strikes an interesting balance with this issue. We're left to wonder if EL's actions are justified given all that he's been through. Is he right to unleash all this fire and bloodshed if they've hurt him for so long? The inhumanity of the folks working at this place is further shown by the other experiments EL sees as he's making his way out. It's clear to EL that this won't be the last time they try something like this, so he wants to strike a blow that will cripple the organization any way he can.

This is shown beautifully by artist Paul Tucker. EL is now weak or subdued here. He's standing tall in all his glory, finally able to let loose without fear of the consequences. He's prepared to accept death if that's what it takes to break free of the tortured existence he's had up until this point. There's a great sequence where EL is throwing punches and taking out guards as fire burns behind him.

I love the look of EL, mixing classic sci-fi robot design with a bit of horror. That pink floating skull he has for a face is made even more frightening with his actions here. The environment is sterile and cold, making EL's face pop on the page as he unleashes his attacks on his captors.

Click image to enlarge

There are a few allegories shown as narration throughout this issue that didn't really resonate. I'm sure they're intended to be some kind of metaphor for what's going on in this issue, but they fall flat. I don't think the story needs them to have the impact it is going for. They are more of a distraction.

Hollow Heart adds some more layers to this intriguing story with this issue. It changes the game by taking EL out of the prison he's known for ages. This opens the door to a ton of new possibilities to explore these characters further. This is what EL has wanted for some time, but what will he do when he gets it?


Story: threeandahalfstars Cover
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Art: threeandahalfstars
Overall: 3.5 Star Rating

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About The Author
James Ferguson
Lord of the Funny Books
James has a 2nd grade reading level and, as a result, only reads books with pictures. Horror is his 5th favorite genre right after romantic comedy and just before silent films. No one knows why he's here, but he won't leave.
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