MINOR SPOILERS BELOW
Satanic Hell #5 continues where the last issue left of, with the members of Satanic Hell in the custody of the totalitarian religious organization that controls the state of Texas. While the boys are prepared for chemical castration to remove their sexual desires, Douros weaves a parallel plotline featuring Eva, daughter of the despicable Reverend Scudder, who has just been forced by her father to get an abortion. Eva is recovering in the same facility that the boys are being held and ends up rescuing them before they can lose their “yarbles.” Teaming up with Satanic Hell, Eva and the boys must figure a way out of the heavily staffed hospital.
Douros builds a decent amount of tension with his “escape the hospital” plot line and also makes a smart move by introducing a female character to the 100% male main cast. While some of the comedic bits went on a bit too long for me, this is an unusually humorous issue for Douros, and I’m sure some Satanic Hell fans will absolutely love it. My real bone to pick with Satanic Hell #5 is the disappointing depiction of Eva towards the end of the issue. I understand that we’ve only spent a limited amount of time with the character and Douros may reveal more nuanced writing of the character in upcoming issues, but the decision by the writer to have Eva ready to jump in bed with Death Priest by the last page seemed like an irrational turn of events. The idea that only the pain of her recent abortion is holding Eva back from nailing the lead member of the band seems not only disingenuous in regards to the traumatic feelings one would likely deal with post-abortion, but also comes of as a thinly-veiled teenage male fantasy. While I stick by my assessment of this plot point in Satanic Hell #5, I will say that Douros has proven himself to be a fairly decent writer in the previous issues, so I don’t believe this “stumble” in the plot is a fatal flaw for the Satanic Hell series. Hopefully, future issues will bring a depiction of Eva and other female characters that makes them more than just prizes to be won by the male leads.
Satanic Hell’s art team continues to bring Douros‘ words vividly to life, and colorist Jimmy Kerast continues to be the standout with the hazy, dilapidated, and hopeless feel he brings to book. And, as with previous issues, Satanic Hell #5 features extra content at the end of the book (similar to the format of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons‘ Watchmen), and this issue comes with an article written by Reverend Scudder in the Christ Today weekly magazine.
FINAL VERDICT: Definitely my least favorite issue of the series so far, but those following the Satanic Hell series will find enough redeeming content to make the issue worth purchasing.
Be sure to read my previous reviews of the series to get an even more detailed examination of this unique comic series:
‘Satanic Hell #1’ Review: Welcome to Texas (Now Get the F#$% Out!)
‘Satanic Hell #2’ Review: We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Religion!
‘Satanic Hell #3’ Review: Still Rockin’ in Texas!
‘Satanic Hell #4:’ Comic Book Review (Introducing The Saint)
Find out more about Satanic Hell by visiting the official website. Satanic Hell #5 is currently available for purchase on ComiXology.
That’s all for now, comic book sniffers! Be careful out there. The news says there are a lot of demon possession going around . . .
'Till the end of the world,
-Bryant the Comic Book Slayer