Ringside is one of those series that might be better read in trade thann on a month-to-month or issue by issue basis. The series, which tells the story of a retired pro-wrestler turned thug, is one that is both slow moving; but at times very fulfilling.
Ringside #7 is not the exception to the rule. It is a slow moving issue, that on its own seems very un-fulfilling focusing mainly on the supporting cast and not on Danny Knossos, the main character.
As an individual issue Ringside #7 is frustratingly boring. Mainly, it feels as if it is a distraction from what has currently been happening in the series. However, for the sake of storytelling, these sorts of issues are incredibly necessary. It helps us to better understand the motivations of the people around Danny, and to empathize or despise them later on in the story.
This is why it is sometimes better to read a series in trade paperback. This comic would feel more fulfilling if it was lumped in between several others, and would give a better sense of the whole.
In some ways I admire Joe Keatinge for taking this approach. He doesn’t beat you over the head with action and adventure, and instead takes time to craft a compelling story. That being said, as a consumer, I find these sorts of issues both annoying and a financial strain. Comics can range anywhere from $3, $4, or even $5. Spending money on a slow moving issue that builds character, but does little else, can feel like a waste of money.
Artist Nick Barber does an ok job illustrating this series. His style is simple and lacks a lot of excessive detail. At times it can be a real pain to look at. However, his clever use of light and shadow helps to set the mood of the scene, and makes up for the lack of detail in the art.
If you are more focused on story then art, you may appreciate the simplicity of Barber’s art style. It doesn’t distract away from the plot, yet if something appears inconsistent within the writing it will be hard not to notice.
The issue feels slow moving, and maybe not worth the money to purchase. However, it provides depth of motivation for the supporting cast. In some ways this issue is completely necessary for a series of this nature, but with comics not being 25-cents any longer Ringside #7 is a hard purchase to justify.
- Builds on the supporting cast
- Story is slow
- Art is simple
- Main character is not the focus