Review: ‘American Ronin’ #5 Falls Backwards

by Benjamin Hall


In this tale corporations are overlords of the populace. One individual breaks free of his overlord’s control. But can he now remove their control of the world?


This issue is number five of five so one would expect some type of resolution to the original premise. Yet, for some reason writer Peter Milligan doesn’t resolve the over-arcing plot. Milligan also fails to create a true cliffhanger ending to this first volume of American Ronin. There is also the problem of how incoherent the narrative is. Primarily this is due to the change in focus from the premise of an individual fighting for their freedom. Instead it boils down to the equivalent of an acid junkie’s interpretation of the movies Assassin (1995) and Face/Off (1997). In other words the writing is atrocious and barely able to be understood.

American Ronin #5 cover by ACO

Artist ACO and inker David Lorenzo do only a slightly better job with the interiors. ACO does succeed at showing details, and providing confident line work. While Lorenzo helps enhance the sense of depth with the inks. Also their skills combine to allow all the designs to look consistent and realistic. However, the layouts range from experimental to a student trying to pretend at experimental. Overall the interiors of the previous issues have better pacing and are easier to follow. Although ACO does deserve praise for the cover’s design actually suggesting an intriguing spy thriller.

Colorist Dean White does a good job with applying the various hues. Not to mention White’s selection of colors helps enhance the art. Unfortunately White’s coloring also combines with Lorenzo’s inking in a way that obscures some of the depth. Speaking of obscuring things letterer Sal Cipriano does that to the art with a few text boxes. Yet, one cannot fully blame Cipriano for this due to how non-traditional the page layouts are. Otherwise Cipriano does a good job at placing the text boxes and word balloons to enhance characterization. Finally it is this reviewer’s opinion that White and Cipriano are arguably keeping this comic from being a zero out of ten.

American Ronin #5 is now out now from AWA Upshot.

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