Writer: Jeff Lemire, Artist: Andrea Sorrentino, Colors: Dave Stewart, Letters: Steve Wands.
It's been quite a few issues since I knew exactly what the heck was going on in Gideon Falls, in both the town and the book as a whole. Once we started the Pentoculus issues— that weird time travel alternate reality machine the villainous Norton Sinclair lords over— things got trippy, primarily due to the sudden appearance of the Father's mustache and his rapid travel through a dozen different worlds.
Things've now finally settled after Danny/Norton made it back with his family, and Father Wilfred has made contact with Dr. Xu.
Gideon Falls #18 at this point begins to give us a more clear direction about where our characters are heading, and how the story is potentially going to come together by the end of everything. Sorrentino's killer artwork clearly paints the tale that Lemire intended, which has been a bit rough in the past few issues, due to the fact that the story is quite purposefully spiraling out of control. His artwork still is quite fun, as some interior pages of the book feature some of the many alternate realities that are available to the Good Father, with my personal favorite being a play on 1984's "Big Brother is always watching" appearing on a screen, which is strikingly present in the vast array of mini-panels.
The tone that Lemire presents in this issue is very reminiscent of many other books coming to a close: the heroes gather, and the heel of the tale makes their way to some ominous, unknown destination. I'm sincerely hoping that Lemire keeps the vibe that was used in this issue, as it reminds me of some of the earlier issues of Gideon Falls, where there was a clearer picture of the setting as a whole.
My only gripe with this particular issue was the cliche transference of an evil entity by said evil entity yacking in the mouth of another character. It felt like a blatant ripoff of The Conjuring movie, where the main demon possesses the unfortunate new matriarch by performing the aforementioned action. Now while the whole vomiting shtick is a spine-chilling, gut-wrenching horror trope, I was half expecting something a little bit... more from Lemire in our Big Bad's method of movement.
At any rate, aside from that little bit of cliche, I believe issue #18 does a great job of bringing the readers back to some solid ground in the Gideon Falls mythos.
For me, this issue brings Gideon Falls to its roots, and is single-handedly keeping the title on my monthly pull list.
Well Done, Lemire & Sorrentino.
I highly recommend you pick up Gideon Falls #18 from your local comic shop or favorite online comic book retailer this Wednesday on 11/13/19.