Advance Review: Side Characters Dominate `Sins Of The Black Flamingo’ #5

by Tom Smithyman


This strong and unique limited series reaches an only partially satisfying conclusion because if focuses too much on secondary characters that have not been fully developed. As a result, the Black Flamingo feels more like a pawn in his own story.


Who couldn’t use a little help from their friends?

After the events of the first four issues in this series Sebastian Harlow certainly could use the help. Despite his best efforts, the Black Flamingo is nearly defeated. His angel lover Ezekiel is being held captive, and two groups of baddies are after him. While Harlow plots and schemes, his friends Ofelia Grace, Abel and Ezekiel take action.

The problem is, aside from Ezekel, the other side characters haven’t been fleshed out enough during this five-part limited series for us to root for them. They dominate the final chapter in this series, pulling our focus away from the main character, Harlow. That feels like a critical mistake as the story reaches its end.

Writer Andrew Wheeler does give readers some action featuring Harlow and the Flamingo, but it’s not enough with the story resolution is on the line. Some better planning to establish why the readers should care about these other characters would have made this conclusion much more satisfying. Wheeler tries to justify his rationale a bit in the closing pages by having Grace explain to Harlow that his is not alone, but it just isn’t the satisfying ending readers deserve at the end of this strong series.

Fortunately, artist Travis Moore has plenty of opportunity to shine in this issue. He has proven adept at depicting action, tasteful sensuality and intrigue. Moore treats us to a couple amazing splash pages that show off the supernatural – and well as his own magical abilities.

A tease at the end of the issue assures readers that the Black Flamingo will return, though it offers no specifics. Ultimately that’s a good thing. It’s means that this unsatisfactory conclusion isn’t really an ending after all. When the series returns, the secondary character either need to play a larger role or Harlow need to learn how to clean up his own messes.

Sins of the Black Flamingo #5 will be available for purchase tomorrow.

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