Spike: Shadow Puppets
by Brian Lynch, Franco Urru (IDW, 2007)

Shadow Puppets had to have been a ton of fun to write. It sure is a whole lot of fun to read.

Remember the episode of Angel when our brooding hero infiltrated the studio of a kids' TV show and got turned into a puppet himself? Well, Smile Time is back on the air in Japan, and this time it's Spike's turn -- with the help of Lorne, the green-skinned demon crooner -- to stop those evil puppets from subverting the youth of the world.

Of course, Spike gets transmogrified into a "wee little puppet man," too. And he's faced with literally thousands of ninja puppets, as well as a murderous Angelus puppet, a pair of Gunns, the three faces of Wesley and all the gang.

Chaos ensues. Hilarity abounds. Beck and Betta George, fan faves from the previous Spike series Asylum, lend a hand along with Tok, the red-clad supernatural ninja assassin for good (who is, by the way, crushing bigtime on Spike). Joss Whedon even makes an appearance as a lonely guy on a computer.

I cannot overstress just how much fun this book is. Franco Urru's artwork is great, but Brian Lynch's writing is beyond the beyond -- he channels Whedon's voice and captures the nuances of character par excellence.

If you like Spike, read this. It's that simple.

review by
Tom Knapp

12 January 2008

what's new