After reading Extreme Carnage: Riot #1, you may never get on a bus again. Alyssa Wong and Fran Galán bring us the fifth installment of the eight-chapter Extreme Carnage summer event this week, and Riot is featured on the cover. But Riot ran off with his tail between his legs in Extreme Carnage: Lasher, right?
This issue opens with Senator Krane, who we found out in Extreme Carnage: Alpha is now controlled by — or is — Carnage. This opening scene helps remind us Carnage is still plotting and should be taken as a major threat by Flash Thompson and Scream, who now goes by Silence. Wong does a good job setting up key information for readers as far as Carnage’s control of what they call the void.
That’s where the bus comes in. Carnage spends much of this issue killing every single person on a bus so as to find a new human host for a named Symbiote. Galán draws an incredible double-page layout of maiming and violence at the top of the page while Andi and Flash prepare themselves for her attempt to confront Carnage. It’s almost spiritual to see Silence prepare and then enter the void which is juxtaposed with total violence above it.
Colors by Jim Campbell help bring out the blood splatter, and there’s lots of it here. Campbell does well to draw out the unique yellow and red of Silence’s costume, too. There’s an incredible double-page splash of Silence attempting to connect to her Symbiote family and the use of color draws out the different Symbiotes. It’s a cool page that defines Silence — who was once Scream — in a new way.
Letters by Ariana Maher are clean, with good emphasis where needed and great sound effects. There are some cool word balloons used that are scratchy and chaotic, just like the Symbiotes in question. There’s an incredible “shunk” that seems to spill out of a person much like the blade being thrust through them.
It’s hard to shake the feeling that this is a table setting issue, from the opening with the senator to Silence discovering something about her new Symbiote. This is a discovery of new selves so to speak and not a direct conflict with Carnage, or a major plot developing issue. That said, it achieves what it sets out to do.
Extreme Carnage: Riot is a good addition to the summer event that has found itself redefining Scream in a very cool way. Extreme Carnage is a good example of how edgy and violent Symbiote stories can be, and I dare you to get on a bus and not feel a shiver after reading this issue.
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