I hope writer Warren Ellis isn’t being paid by the word, because there aren’t a lot of them here! But taciturn storytelling is appropriate for the grim and mysterious Karnak, a third-tier member of a third-tier team, who makes a play for A-List status in this moody and superior story. Normally it is Black Bolt who is the silent Inhuman, but here the absence of words well-reflects Karnak’s contemplative world — both his interior meditative realm, as well as Karnak’s reclusive Tower of Wisdom, a kind of monastery that Karnak is building by doing hired work for S.H.I.E.L.D. Gerardo Zaffino’s art, with colors by Dan Brown, is equivalently spare. Ellis writes Karnak as uncompromising and more than a little bit of an asshole, but he’s a riveting character here, and I’m curious to see if Karnak will thaw as the story progresses, or instead become even more full of himself.
Approachability For New Readers
There’s all sorts of Inhumans and S.H.I.E.L.D. gobbledygook here … but you know what? Karnak is such a blank slate — and this interpretation of him is so singular — that this is as good a place to jump on as any.
Absolutely. Anti-heroes are my flaw!
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