Advance Review: Exploring The Horror Of That First Kill In `The Silver Coin’ #12

by Tom Smithyman


The horror anthology series returns with a tale of a soldier seeking first blood during World War II. Great artwork from Michael Walsh and some supporting colors perfectly depict the bleakness of war and the impending doom brought forth from the eponymous coin.


In war, no one is innocent. Even the nicest or meekest person must be turned into a killing machine in order to win. But when that transformation occurs with the help of a cursed coin, that first kill doesn’t go according to plan.

In The Silver Coin #12, the anthology series returns with a tale from the closing days of World War II, with a platoon of Americans fighting Germans in the Alps. After securing a ridge, we’re quickly introduced to the surviving members, including Patrick, who has yet to make his first kill. A wounded German soldier offers him the cursed coin. With the coin in his pocket, Patrick finds the courage he has been looking for – sort of.

In writer Stephanie Phillips hands, Patrick is relatable character. Few want to be in a position where they take another’s life, but in war, the rules are off. When he is placed in a situation where his squad is in danger, he finds the necessary courage. In fact, he excels at it, even turning to hand-to-hand combat when necessary. Of course, this being The Silver Coin, the guts he was looking for are soon spilled over the snowy mountaintop.

With his gritty style, artist Michael Walsh sets the perfect tone during the battles and their aftermaths. In the fact, the book opens with a snowflake gently falling on the body of a soldier – a massive hole blown through his head. It expertly tells the story of war. No words necessary. Muted colors from Walsh and fellow colorist Toni Marie Griffin further paint the grim picture of the fight – and of the occasional zombie.

This series has consistently turned out good stories from various hot writers, all united through Walsh’s artwork. With future issues around Y2K and the Covid-19 pandemic, the stories may start to feel even more relevant. That’s a whole different kind of horror.

The Silver Coin #12 will be available for purchase tomorrow.

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