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Black Cloak #1 ADVANCE REVIEW. Murder most foul, but the book is a delight.

Black Cloak Issue 1 Cover 1. Published by Image Comics.

Black Cloak #1

Written by Kelly Thompson.

Art by Meredith McClarren.

Letters by Becca Carey.

Being a Black Cloak is hard, hated and feared in equal measure. Being Phaedra Essex is even harder. In addition to being a Black Cloak, she's also an exiled Elven royal. Then, just to add a smidge more difficulty to her life, her new case is investigating a dead body found in a flop house. A dead body that belongs to an Elf Prince... This is case is going to be rough. Especially for Essex.

Asshat is a top tier insult.

Kelly Thompson is ON FIRE, right now. One of the most consistent writers Marvel have, she's been putting out banger after banger. Now, not content with creating the best Marvel character in decades, Jeff the Landshark (co-created with artist Daniele Di Nicuolo), she's teaming up with Artist Meredith McClaren to drop a new comic which is going to be HUGE.

Welcome to Kiros, the last city in the known world.

I can't lie. I already love this place. Not in a "I wish I could live there" way, it sounds like living there would be a freakin' nightmare. It's more of a "I can't wait to find out everything about this place" kind of thing. Between McClaren's sparse but instantly engaging art, and Thompson's subtle world building, I was instantly captivated by Kiros. Despite this being a new story, in a freshly created world, I felt like I'd been part of this Universe for years; dodging the carnivorous mermaids, and swatting away the worryingly adorable wraiths.

But this book is more than just a vehicle to introduce the world; there's the start of what promises to be an excellent story here. As all first issues should do, Black Cloak tells the reader jjuusstt enough to let us know, that we don't know nearly enough. Promising us a tale of murder, politics, love, and some seriously strained family relationships. Also, carnivorous mermaids. I know I mentioned them before, but I just love scary fish people. Sue me. 4 POPs out of 5, a VERY strong start, that can only go up, from here!

If you love scary fish, excellent world building, and engaging art, check out Black Cloak #1. Releasing on January 11, 2023, published by Image Comics, and available from anywhere you get your comics! So run and tell your LCS to reserve you a copy.

Nothing worse than a day, that feels like a week.


Taheg Gloder is a Freelance Copywriter from England. Obsessed with comics and Manga since his teens, he now splits his time between writing comic reviews and retrospectives for POP, and doing reactions on his YouTube Channel, The Dragon & The Hound. He lives alone, because he’s a hermit.

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