ACCELL #4 | Writer: Joe Casey | Artist: Damion Scott | Colorist: Sigmund Torres | Release Date: September 13, 2017
The last few issues of Accell had Daniel Dos Santos running through a higher-level dimension while being chased by a gargantuan monster called “Old Dag” as he went on a spiritual journey to learn about his speed powers. In Accell #4, he’s on jetlag from the experience and having trouble coming to terms with the fact that he still has a normal life to live. His spiritual jaunt made it difficult to focus on anything else in life, and given what had happened in so short a time, it would be a crime to blame the kid. That kind of thing can wreak havoc on the emotions and with what he’d been through, even the general perceptions of life.
Accell #4 opens up with the mundane trip to the diner with friends. After what Daniel’s seen, everything must seem mundane… and excruciatingly slow. What I sense here, as I have from issue one, is an impending break up with his girlfriend Monica. She’s a sweet girl, but Daniel has no idea how to process the things he’s going through, and though she’s blind to his aloofness, he knows that she deserves better than a guy’s mind that is always elsewhere. Of course, if he spoke to her about what was going through his mind, that could help them out. But it doesn’t look like things are going in that direction.
Still, with her father being who he is, it’s likely that Daniel may have to end up saving her from him. As things go for him, I don’t find him to be convincing in his intimidation. When he starts smacking around Barrage, the man he hired to take out Accell, I find it very hard to believe. Even with the man being drunk. It doesn’t seem like a man paying him money should be able to command that much respect from an assassin for hire who he has no history with other than this job. It would seem more likely that the assassin would kill him right there, being the skillful mercenary that he is. Instead he goes on to tell him about Glazz, who looks like he’s made of glass or something of the like.
When the scenes move back to focus on Daniel playing games with his friends, while I like that he was able to find the boy (Kevin) and rough his brother up, the scene itself felt out of place and disconnected. In fact, many of the scenes seem to be disconnected in this issue, including the final page that shows an interesting looking lady speaking about the darkness in the city. While she does look like a fun character, her introduction seems random and doesn’t really inspire me to care about why she’s there yet.
I think the main thing this book suffers from is plot direction. Too many things seem to be happening at the same time, or out of order or both. There’s the issue with Monica and her father. There’s the boy who beats his brother. There’s Barrage, Glazz, and now this new mysterious woman, and none of this connects to Old Dag or the Old Man Daniel saw in the desert in previous issues. I hang on to the issues that he’s going on a character journey level but it doesn’t seem to mesh well with the plot surrounding him, and plot must compliment character. The main reason I’m still interested in this book is to see how all of these things tie together, if they do at all. Hopefully we’ll see something better in future issues.