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"King in Black: Scream #1" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by Marvel Comics


Written by Clay McLeod Chapman
Illustrated by Garry Brown
Colored by Rachelle Rosenberg
Lettered by Cory Petit
2021, 34 Pages, $4.99
Comic released on March 24th, 2021


With Knull and his symbiote forces having seemingly taken over the world, it was only a matter of time before Andi Benton and Scream had an encounter with the evil god. Fortunately, she's more than just a symbiote host, she also has the power of the demonic Hell-Mark to give her an extra boost in this battle. Will that be enough to win, let alone survive?

Andi's story is one that's rife with potential. We saw a bit of that in the limited series follow up to Absolute Carnage and writer Clay McLeod Chapman continues that here. The character presents an interesting perspective on the anti-hero symbiote that's not the one we're used to with Eddie Brock. She also comes with her own baggage and trauma that she's trying to sift through while also doing the right thing. This is increasingly difficult when she has a symbiote that can so easily pull her to the dark side. The two have an interesting bond that manages to keep each other in check.

Click images to enlarge

The Hell-Mark is another aspect to Andi that makes her unique, mixing the powers of the symbiote with those of demons and the underworld. That's a powerful combination. Artist Garry Brown depicts this in a beautifully horrifying manner. Before she embraces this power, Scream looks like a withered corpse. She gets bigger and more intimidating once the Hell-Mark pops, showing just how strong she can become, although we don't know the full price of this just yet. It's funny to think that, despite this monstrous appearance, Andi is a good guy in this fight.

Scream has a showdown with Knull himself in this issue, which makes me wonder how all of these King in Black tie-ins fit together. The guy seems to be everywhere at once, making the event feel a little unorganized. For someone that is so focused on Eddie and Dylan Brock, he sure gets around to anyone that might have a glimmer of a connection to a symbiote. Letterer Cory Petit makes Knull sound as menacing as ever with his signature scratchy font and red word balloons.

Click images to enlarge

Also, you can't have a King in Black tie-in without a fight with a symbiote dragon. This issue presents a new spin on it by pulling in Knull too. Scream fights with the fires of Hell bursting from her chest like a firehouse of brimstone. Colorist Rachelle Rosenberg brings this to life in brutal fashion. The light is bright, but it's not one of sunshine. This comes from a dark place and it shows.

If this is the kind of horror-based adventure we can get from Scream, I desperately want to see more. Who do we have to talk to in order to get an ongoing series going? Think of all the supernatural and otherworldly things she can deal with using her unique skill set. This is a standout in the King in Black event as it shows the potential for what else this character can do.


Story: fourandahalfstars Cover
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Art: fourstars
Overall: 4.5 Star Rating

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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