Beware the Soul Crusher – Spawn #274

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Title:  Spawn # 274

Publisher:  Image Comics

Writers:  Todd McFarlane

Artists:  Szymon Kudranski

Story Rating:  7

Art Rating:  10

Color Rating: 10

Overall Rating:  9

Image Comics continues to test the dark avenger Spawn as he continues to look after the innocent in a city of demons, killers, and psychopaths. The issue has our hero watching over Cyan as the dangerous Soul Crusher is hunting her down. In the meantime the local cops are trying to get ahead of this mysterious killer in the open investigation. 

Written by Todd McFarlane, Soul Crusher with a warped sense of justice kills a doctor in order to locate Cyan.  So he can further question Cyan about her kidnapper’s whereabouts. He seeks to rid the world of evil people but does not realize he has become a psycho himself. 

The action within this issue is brief but powerful for the duration when Spawn clashes with Soul Crusher in the suburban neighborhood. Spawn uses his many tools and powers to gain the upper hand and defeat his deadly foe. Spawn releases a barrage of gunfire to follow up with his haunting chains. Soul Crusher uses his toxic gas to fight Spawn but is eventually defeated and disappears into the ruble. 

The art by Szymon Kudranski is well executed for the shading, which reflects the dark presence of Spawn every time he appears on the page from his winding cape to glowing eyes. The art has a sense of realism for the characters who do not possess generic faces but are given facial features and color tones to enhance the facial structure. 

The colors are great in this issue while having a consistent art style. The emphasis is on the characters themselves so they can stand out for the eye to locate. Therefore, we can understand what emotional connection since the color correlates characters’ presence.  Spawn is seen mostly covered in shadow while other characters are seen in brighter tones despite it being daytime. 

The conclusion of the issue presents the reader with a potential encounter with the dreaded Soul Crusher in the future. When he returns just how much more chaos will he create and will Spawn be ready? 

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