Extra Credit 3: The Groundskeeper
Writer: Tyrone Finch
Illustrator: Cayetano Valenzuela
After two prior successful and funny volumes, Mark Russell is back with a third course of this satirical series which takes the main character into the realm of parenting and the everyday challenges of super hero’ing. This issue finds Sunstar meeting his arch nemesis Cranius in court while Jesus watches his son Jordan. Sunstar, feeling a little guilty, has a flashback of sorts to a high school reunion where he makes Cranius the brunt of some pranks and causes him great embarrassment. He can’t help but feel a little responsible for the villain Cranius has become. Thus, a wild plan is hatched and Sunstar has the lawyers strike a deal with the judge to exonerate Cranius. The understanding though, that he would be sent on what is basically a suicide mission into space as one of the Earth’s first deep space probes.
It’s not often that you get to read a comic where Jesus is the comic relief. Just like the prior two volumes this was a really fun read. I laughed out loud a few times. It’s just silly. While it’s mostly funny there are also hints of genuine feelings and emotion that make it resonate with the reader. It’s a very grounded comic at its core. Dealing with life’s everyday situations and stresses. The inner turmoil and guilt Sunstar feels while he stands as the primary witness against Craniac. The stress and anxiety Jesus has while babysitting Sunstar’s son. The embarrassment and sadness Cranius feels at his school reunion. You can’t help but feel bad for the guy! It all adds up to what is a very complete story. Once you throw in the satire and humor it has the heft of some of our best tv sitcoms and that’s no easy feat to pull off in this medium!
Overall, Mark Russell and team continue to be on the top of their game and I highly recommend giving this series a shot. The story is great. The art is great. It’s just a really fun series in general. Sure, it would probably be helpful to start with the earlier volumes but this is still plenty accessible as a new reader as well. Enjoy!
Rating – 8/10 Great!
The second story by Tyrone Finch is a tightly woven bit of prose that’s equal part horror and coming of age tale. There’s a subtle and innocent playfulness to it and I loved how it ended. It even made me chuckle. Short stories can be very difficult to pull off but this was a fun little read and a great addition to the comic overall.
Rating – 10/10 Superb!
The third and final story by Darrick Patrick is a swirling construct of time, space and creation. The story plays like a bit of an out of body experience and leaves you questioning your very own existence. It begs the question: is this real or are we all part of someone else’s dream? While short, this is a story you will need to read again to fully appreciate.
Rating – 8/10 Great!
Second Coming: Trinity #1 is now available.
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