Review – The Crimson Cage #3

Review – The Crimson Cage #3

Review – The Crimson Cage #3

Story: John Lees

Art: Alex Cormack

Colour: Ashley Cormack

Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou

Publisher: AWA Studios/ Upshot Studios

Available: 17th February 2022

Act III: Bad Omen Vibes

The blood-drenched pro wrestling retelling of Macbeth continues. Chuck Frenzy has it now. The fame, the jet-setting lifestyle, the title belt, all as the Bayou Sisters promised, and he played most foully for it.

The Abominable Grudd, Chuck’s best friend and wrestling rival, was also promised a bountiful future but is content not to meddle with fate, to let things fall as they may. He can’t be a threat to Chuck. Can he?

Story: John Lees

This issue starts with a wrestling monologue from the Abominable Grudd, giving his fears for his son Brian’s future in the ring as well as for his best friend, Chuck. We then jump into the squared circle for a knockdown tag match between Chuck, Brian, Terry (Grudd) and the Masked Scumbag. brian shines through the match and this fills Chuck with more dread for the prophecy of Brian having greater glory than him. As they depart a guilty Chuck hugs his friend, a final sting of treachery as he sends him and Brian off to ceratin death.

Lees’ never stops and slows down this issue with almost every page full of frenetic energy, tag team matches, battle royals and Grodd getting his head sliced off by the mysterious Lucha who Chuck enlisted for help the last issue. The final page signs with Chuck’s growing horror of who and what he has become and his panic that it was all for nought.

Art: Alex Cormack

Holy shit.. is all I can say to describe Cormack’s amazing wresting artwork within this issue, coupled with the treacherous decapitation by car door on page 13. In this issue Cormack skillfully makes Chuck look smaller and off centre as the action focussed on Brian and Terry as Chuck moves from protagonist to antagonist.

Again, credit to Otsmane-Elhaou’s onomatopoeic lettering during the wresting and beheading panels that provides a welcome audio element.

Overall Thoughts

All I can say is Holy Shit what a difference a month makes to a character! The downfall and so-called tragedy of Chuck are laid bare in this issue for what it always was, greedy and treacherous. The incredible way Less and Cormack balance on the ropes between the plot and wrestling show why everybody needs to read this title.

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Michael Lennox

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T'was a cold dark night in East Kilbride... and below the roundabouts, something old and ancient began to shudder awake. The world would rue the day that it gave the Green Jaguar comics to read!

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