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"Stranger Things: Six #3" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by Dark Horse Comics

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Written by Jody Houser
Illustrated by Edgar Salazar
Inked by Keith Champagne
Colored by Marissa Louise
Lettered by Nate Piekos
2019, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on July 31st, 2019

Review:

Francine gets deeper into the Hawkins Laboratory and Project MK Ultra, including a trip to the sensory deprivation chamber in an effort to unlock the full extent of her abilities. She still can't control her visions of the future, nor does she fully understand what she sees. You can imagine how valuable this power would be, so Dr. Brenner has a vested interest in seeing this through. This is met by frustration when he can't get what he wants, but Francine (aka Six) has had about enough of this place and all the men that have pushed her around her entire life.

Stranger Things: Six #3 gives us a glimpse into Francine's visions in a gorgeous splash page. While artist Edgar Salazar fills this with haunting images split up by a creepy smoke that flows through the image, it's colorist Marissa Louise that steals the show. This is a violent red that adds to the alarming nature of what this poor girl is seeing. The landscape changes completely when Francine taps into her power, like she's really seeing the world for the first time.

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This is a jarring contrast to Francine's life in the past and the present. It's like the lights shine a little less bright out in the real world when Francine isn't using her abilities.

It can be hard to show these kids using their telepathic and telekinetic powers in a comic book. How do you show someone trying to read someone's mind? This is why Professor X always holds his hand up to his head when he's using his psychic power. Louise gives us a great visual cue for Francine's powers and Salazar makes the world around Ricky warp and change when he uses his to manipulate a guard.

There's an ominous tone throughout the Hawkins Laboratory brought on in no small part by Keith Champagne's inks. Shadows loom in the dark corners and corridors, stripping away any life or energy. This leaves an inhuman feeling which matches up to Dr. Brenner's uncaring nature.

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Brenner's appearance in the present is like the polar opposite of what he was like in the past. Back then he was a warm and caring man, seemingly out to help the misunderstood like Francine. We see now that was just part of his conniving manipulation to get kids into his program. This shows on his face now, looking at the children with something close to disdain. It's more like a condescending glance, like he knows what's best.

Stranger Things: Six #3 builds to a frightening climax, as another patient is pushed to the breaking point. It's a tense sequence made even more so by how unpredictable the young woman's powers are. The results are alarming. Letterer Nate Piekos adds the finishing touches to this terrifying scene with the quiet determined words of the girl and the horrified last gasps of her attendant.

Stranger Things: Six delivers a valuable additional perspective on the Hawkins Laboratory that spawned one of the breakout characters of the TV show. This comic is a must-read for any Stranger Things fan. It shows the size and scope of this world with some compelling characters and amazing artwork.

Grades:

Story: Fourandahalfstars Stranger Things Six 3 Small
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Art: Fourandahalfstars
Overall: Fourandahalfstars

About The Author
Spez Bio 2
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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