It may be the holiday season, but when horror is as gripping as Night of the Ghoul is, you turn off the Christmas music and give it the attention it deserves, especially when issue #3 drops today from ComiXology. This is a story about a man named Inman and his son visiting an old man who houses the secrets of a mysterious film, an ancient monster, and a clinic that may be more evil than the Ghoul itself. In the third issue, the new film from the lost film is shown, new details about the monster come to light, and Mr. Inman shows what he really cares about.
Night of the Ghoul #3 picks up where we left off with Mr. Inman’s round of questioning about the lost film being interrupted by a scary-looking fellow who works at the facility. He may look put together in a suit and glasses, but on some level, you can tell he’s even more horrific than the very old and withered Mr. Patrick. Part two plays out to relieve a bit of tension from what Inman’s son saw as well as the workers who want them to vacate.
Part three picks up with the burned-up film which helps define what the Ghoul maybe, but also how he has existed amongst humanity. It’s a frightening idea that ties into plagues and cults over the centuries. Scott Snyder and Francesco Francavilla slowly reveal the horror of the Ghoul via a conversation that has more to do with humanity than one might think. We also gain new insight into what the monster can do further making it more than a boogieman but something far more dangerous to Inman and his son in the present.
Snyder shifts gears from the film to give us more insight into Inman, his son, and his wife who we have yet to learn much about. This scene helps define these characters as real and well-rounded, but also rife with personal issues and insecurities. Francavilla does an exceptional job showing slices of these characters reacting to one another making you believe their responses and the pain they hold inside.
By the end of this scene, our understanding of both is upgraded substantially with both coming off as tragic in their own way. In some strange way, this scene cements the idea that they are doomed to face the Ghoul or be destroyed by the truth of it.
Something that has been apparent from the second issue is how this series is less episodic chapters and more one extended sequence. It makes each issue read as if it’d work best collected.
The last half of the issue brings the terror in a few different ways, one being a visual payoff mentioned in an earlier scene. Francavilla’s use of yellow, orange, and blue creates a dynamic range between characters or by simply drawing your focus. There is something incredibly raw visually that enhances the great pain and obsession of Inman.
There’s an unmistakable give and take going on in Night of the Ghoul that satisfies readers while also keeping us in the dark. The idea of the Ghoul is further fleshed out in Night of the Ghoul #3, making for a satisfying chapter while also developing its main characters so that they are all the more real.
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