Review: The Circle #5

Written by Rachel Freeman

The Circle is published by Action Lab comics under their DangerZone imprint. It is written by Damon Clark with art by Alyzia Zherno.

Well. Here we are, friends. Issue 5. The final issue of the dark and creepy story. As much as I love things being rounded up, I really hated to see this story reach its end. If you haven’t read any of this series yet, you need to. It’s only 5 issues and they are now all available and it’s a must-read. Especially if you’re a horror fan.

WARNING: THIS REVIEW WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ ISSUES #1-4

So, here we are at the climax of the story. Christian has to kill the remaining 3 members of the group in order to truly be free of his curse. Or so he thinks. Despite considering just leaving with his dad without killing the rest, his plan is immediately ruined when he gets a picture from Daniel…of his dad. They have him. So now Christian has no choice but to face them in a 3 against 1 stand-off.

I think my favorite scene of this issue is when he goes to his mom’s grave to talk to her. I lost my mom at a young age and even though I’m now an adult, I do go and talk to her. I talk to her when I’m feeling overwhelmed especially and it helps me put my mind at ease and think. So, I really liked that Damon Clark had this serene scene in the midst of all this madness. It added an element of realness to the growing fantasy. And as expected with it being the final issue, there is tragedy and death. But I won’t say of who! There is also a big reveal at the end (that I totally called, but that’s beside the point).

So, let’s get to the break down….

Pros: As I say in every issue, Alyzia Zherno nailed the art for this story. I can’t think of a better style that could have been applied. I love the shadows, the drab colors, the creepiness of pretty much every single person in this town. Kudos to you, Alyzia. I also love the dialogue. They sound like teenagers and that’s important. I’ve read many comics and books where the “teenagers” talk like sophisticated adults that went to an ivy league college or they’re over the top and stereotypical. But these kids were just right, in my opinion, all the way to the end. I really like how intense everything got and how sociopathic Christian’s “friends” had become (well, except Phoebe…for the most part). Also, the death scenes in this issue were downright disturbing. Like…damn. It was epic. The ending also rounded up things nicely, but left it open enough to continue again.

Cons: Everything happened so fast. Which unfortunately comes with the territory of writing a short series. I think that once it’s put in trade format, the transition will feel much smoother, but reading month to month, the build was steady and then in the last 2 issues everything just started happening and it was like woah. There’s nothing wrong with the story aspect, however, it does feel very rushed. I feel like pieces were missing in this issue. I think there is a lot more that could be explored for Christian and this world and I sincerely hope we get to see it one day.

As our story comes to a close, I have to say that I highly recommend this series. I enjoyed every issue, even this last one that felt a bit hectic and rushed. Ultimately, this story was amazing. So for an overall score, I give The Circle, as a whole, a 9.5 / 10.

Make sure you pick up a copy of #5 at your local comic store and be on the look out for the trade, release is still TBA.