Ripping Out Frank Castle’s Heart: Savage Avengers #4 Reviewed

by Josh Davison

[*Mild Spoilers Ahead!]

Kulan Gath has summoned his Marrow God, and the creature now threatens to consume all life on Earth. The first line of defense is made up of Wolverine, Punisher, Conan, Elektra, and Brother Voodoo. Wolverine strikes first and seemingly disappears into the marrow god. Elektra tries to kill Gath but finds herself unable. Gath then gets into Frank Castle’s head and toys with the memories of his family. He then teleports the Marrow God to New York and leaves a parting gift for the Punisher.

Savage Avengers #4 cover by David Finch and Frank D'Armata
Savage Avengers #4 cover by David Finch and Frank D’Armata

Savage Avengers #4 finds most of the team united and fighting as one against Kulan Gath and his Marrow God. They may not have had the opportunity to plan or coordinate, but the Savage Avengers are each trained fighters and know how to work together with complete strangers.

Punisher and Conan’s parts in this comic are by far the most interesting, though Elektra gets some good moments too. Kulan Gath really stabs at the heart of Frank Castle, and we get to see how the Punisher deals and overcomes such an attack. Conan thinks the symbiote attached to him is the voice of Crom, and that adds an interesting dynamic to his part in this drama. Elektra may turn out to be the leader of this team, as she succeeds in getting the others in line and focused.

Also, Eddie Brock does finally show up in this issue, though I won’t spoil the specifics of how and why.

Savage Avengers #4 art by Mike Deodato Jr., Frank Martin, and letterer VC's Travis Lanham
Savage Avengers #4 art by Mike Deodato Jr., Frank Martin, and letterer VC’s Travis Lanham

Mike Deodato Jr. continues to show his great talents in this issue, though his art does take some surprising turns towards the middle of the comic. It begins looking less polished and more flat–though I can’t say it’s inherently a bad thing. It makes the comic seem a bit more gritty and tactile, which is good considering the premise of this book is that it’s the killer Avengers. Frank Martin’s color work is a balanced and contrasts itself well enough to keep the eye trained on the page.

Savage Avengers #4 is a slightly more character-focused issue than previous installments. It’s a little smarter, but still loaded with action and a ton of fun. This comic earns a recommendation. Feel free to check it out.

Savage Avengers #4 comes to us from writer Gerry Duggan, artist Mike Deodato Jr., color artist Frank Martin, letterer VC’s Travis Lanham, cover artist David Finch with Frank D’Armata, and variant cover artists Simone Bianchi with Simone Peruzzi; and Gerardo Zaffino.

Final Score: 7.5/10

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