Outcast #12: Kyle Barnes Goes to War Against The Evil That Has Taken His Sister [Review]

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Outcast is a demonic possession horror comic series from writer Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead) and artist Paul Azaceta. The Image Comics release has just dropped issue #12 so check out my review right here.

Kyle Barnes has been plagued by demonic possession all his life and now he needs answers. Unfortunately, what he uncovers along the way could bring about the end of life on Earth as we know it. It begins here – with this terrifying new horror series from THE WALKING DEAD creator Robert Kirkman and artist Paul Azaceta.

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I was disturbed by Megan’s feral noises at the end of last issue but that was nothing compared to how we kick off the 12th and final issue of the second story arc in Outcast. We jump right into the matter at hand as Megan turns extremely violent and tries to attack her husband Mark after becoming possessed by the forces of evil. The way Paul Azaceta illustrates the ruthless attack is truly unsettling as Megan smashes Mark’s head into the floor repeatedly. It’s even more frightening when her child walks into the room and Megan makes a run for the little one…

It was a tad jarring to see how optimistic Kyle Barnes was when Mark shows up at his door to ask for help with Megan. When you read a series month to month you tend to forget that in the prior issue how the tone has been altered. Last chapter saw Kyle find a new lease on life in that he realized that his daughter still loved him, which gave our lead a sense of hope for the first time in such a grim series. Kyle has been a downer all comic long, so to see him so determined and glass half full in many respects even during a brutal exorcism attempt on Megan – was sorta bizarre.

As always with Outcast, more questions pop up just when we think something definitive will be answered. We still don’t know what an “Outcast” is, even though the evil that takes hold of people are constantly referring to Kyle as being one. We still don’t know what exactly or why these entities are possessing people. We don’t know why some people up in comas after the entity leaves their bodies and well… there’s not much we do know and that is starting to get frustrating to some degree. What drives the story in the wake of the slow unraveling in regards to the rules or mythos of this world, are the well written characters and the scary set pieces drawn brilliantly by Azaceta. Props to Elizabeth Breitweiser on her colors and Rus Wooton for his sweet lettering work which only add to the unique and dark tone of the series.

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Much of issue 12 is action and subsequent set-up for Kyle and reverend Anderson’s mission ahead of them to save not only Megan, but EVERYONE affected by these evil entities. What I found most interesting was Kyle’s suggestion to no longer follow the bible and I loved how he walks into the room and throws regular water at Megan and it has the same effect as Anderson’s blessed supply. I don’t know what the hell any of this means of course but it was wildly intriguing.

Just for fun – remember how Kirkman joked that aliens were going to be behind the zombie apocalypse in Walking Dead when he pitched the series to Image? You know how aliens are allergic or can be killed by water in that awful movie ‘Signs’? What if… Just what if… the possessed people aren’t taken by satanic spirits – BUT ALIENS! Mic drop, Kirkman walks off the stage and the readers sit there stunned, pissed and super confused.

Yeah I went there. Deal with it.

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Editor-In-Chief of Fox Force Five News. I had a zombie cameo on the opening page of The Walking Dead issue #91, where I was killed with a machete... It was awesome.