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Monday, July 15, 2024

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STRAY DOGS #4 review – Unleashed (Fleecs, Forstner, Simpson, Rodriguez) Image Comics

Thanks to Image Comics for the review copy!

Two things hit me when I read the fourth issue of STRAY DOGS. First, I am genuinely surprised at how much I care about these anthropomorphized cartoon dogs given the fact that I am not a dog person. Second, when I realized this is the fourth in a five issue series, I was excited to see how the story is resolved and sad to know that it is ending.

STRAY DOGS is about a group of dogs who come to realize their owner is really a serial killer dude who killed their prior owners.  It’s a dark concept that belies its Disney style art. This issue takes that concept and manages to go darker, following the implied fate of Victor at the end of issue 3. It’s a turn that manages to be shocking while feeling organic. The panels cleverly stretch out the reveal, forcing us to guess what is going to be shown based on the dogs’ reaction.

I’ve raved about the STRAY DOGS art before and this issue is no exception. The art style allows the dogs to show human emotions, which really is essential to this issue. I’ve always felt an interesting dissonance between the cutesy art and the story. This issue further plays on that concept and it makes the reveal even more startling.  

This issue brings Earl to the forefront, which is interesting given what he did in issue 3. My one disappointment is that with only one issue left, we won’t be able to learn more about all of the dogs. Given the storyline (and some images in this issue) STRAY DOGS deserves some parental discretion even though it lacks cursing. It’s like a Disney story, but for adults. 

STRAY DOGS #4 is now available.

Check back in a few weeks for my thoughts on the 5th and final issue of the 5 part series.

Are you reading the series? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter.

Darren Shulman
Darren Shulman
Darren is a professional lawyer and amateur movie/comic/TV reviewer who is lucky enough to have found a wife who is into the same geeky things he is. Darren has been making the trip from Ohio to San Diego Comic-Con since 2009. Other interests include, in no particular order: monkeys, LEGO, dinosaurs, and playing basketball poorly.

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