[*Mild Spoilers Ahead!]
Khalee has given herself over to the dark forces that once granted Shrae his powers, and she is now using them to fight back against the creatures that have taken her family and many of the Ark’s monsters hostage. Her siblings fear for her safety and her soul, but they can’t turn away the help. We learn what the island creatures are and where they came from, and they respect the powers that now back Khalee. She and her family allowed to enter the creatures’ village, but can this confrontation be ended with peace?
Dark Ark #15 brings this stretch of the story to a conclusion and, it seems, the series as a whole. Khalee and her newfound powers bring this encounter with these island creatures to a conclusion, and the new hierarchy between Shrae, his family, and the Ark monsters is established.
It all comes to pass so quickly, and I was left a little shocked to discover that this is the ending.
It’s a fairly weak ending. A lot of questions seem to be deliberately left unanswered, which implies Cullen Bunn and Juan Doe may revisit this one at a later date if they can. However, there’s no real closure to the story. We get an ending to this particular chapter, that is to say the conflict with the island creatures, but there are numerous threads left dangling in the wind that seem like they should just be followed up with another new issue next month. There’s no sense of closure at all.
That’s not to say Dark Ark #15 is a bad read; it just doesn’t have that sense of satisfaction that should come from a comic series ending. There is still plenty of broad divine implications to much of the events, there is a supernatural conflict between monsters and sorcerers, and Kruul is still awesome. In other words, it still has what makes a Dark Ark issue compelling.
Juan Doe’s artwork continues to represent this dangerous and strange world in an interesting and distinct fashion. The island creatures have a fantastic design, and Kruul looks as imposing as ever. The color palette is sickly and alienating– as it should be in a world of monsters.
Dark Ark #15 isn’t a satisfying conclusion, but it is still an entertaining issue with some good twists. While I can’t really applaud it as an ending, I can still recommend it as a solid comic reading experience. Feel free to check it out.
Dark Ark #15 comes to us from writer Cullen Bunn, artist and cover artist Juan Doe, and letterer Dave Sharpe.