Review: Possession Is Beginning To Take Its Toll In ‘Knock ‘Em Dead’ #4

‘Pryor has gotten a taste of what it’s like to be special. To be on top. And he likes it. But after trading one spirit for another, the process of possession is beginning to take its toll on his body.

Meanwhile, Ronan has stepped up as Pryor’s manager and exorcist. The life that she has always wanted to live is in sight. Unfortunately, she can tell something is wrong with her brother. And when Pryor finally gets an opportunity for his first break at the big time, he and his sister must decide if another possession is worth it to take the shot.’

When picking a deceased comic to possess your own corporeal form, it’s probably not best to choose one who OD’d on narcotics. That’s where Pryor is at the beginning of Knock ‘Em Dead #4. Having decided our man Danny had to go, Pryor and Ronnie had him exorcised in the last chapter. The problem with that arrangement is Pryor isn’t funny on his own, so the siblings decide to invite a comedy legend, Mr. Lenny Bruce, to the party. Serious upgrade on the schtick, serious drag on health and lifestyle.

I’ve said before, and I’ll say again, Eliot Rahal comes through clearly in this book. His personal successes and setbacks on the standup comedy circuit are telegraphed through Pryor’s journey. Success is a mother. There’s a whole new set of pitfalls to avoid when you break through that glass ceiling. Luckily, Pryor has his big sis/manager looking out for him, right? I mean, sorta. Ronnie may have a decent grasp on managing the booking and finances, but she has no idea how to reign Pryor/Bruce in on the personal end.

Mattia Monaco and Matt Milla have been steadily dialing up the horror. Everything is super dark, matching the weight of the script. Mirrors brilliantly reveal the nature of Pryor’s predicament. As Danny’s and Bruce’s images are visibly rotting, it’s Pryor’s soul that’s catching the worst end of the decay.  

My biggest complaint about this series to date has been the pacing. Knock ‘Em Dead is scheduled to blow off next month, in the fifth installment. One more chapter would have been nice. Chapter three felt rushed. I could have done with a little more work on the exorcism before the re-possession. That being said, everything seems to have leveled back out in the fourth, and this is still my favorite Eliot Rahal joint yet. 

Knock ‘Em Dead #4, AfterShock Comics, 10 March 2021. Written by Eliot Rahal, art by Mattia Monaco, color by Matt Milla, letters by Taylor Esposito.

‘Pryor has gotten a taste of what it’s like to be special. To be on top. And he likes it.COMICONRead More

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: