The most striking thing, reading Unknown Soldier again, is how much Dysart gets done in the first issue. I know where it goes, so reading it for the first time I wouldn’t have been able to appreciate it as much as I do this time.
Don’t get me wrong, I thought it was great after that first reading, but this issue–another time through–could be it. The title wouldn’t work, but if this issue was just in an anthology, it could be a standalone.
Dysart gets in his protagonist’s entire history, mostly through a nice layer–a speech–and then puts him through an incredible change. That change will make him the titular character eventually, but it’s not essential to this issue. This issue is a perfect artistic motion. There couldn’t be a better first issue.
This comic wowed me the first read.
This time it’ll be even better.
Haunted House, Chapter One; writer, Joshua Dysart; artist, Alberto Ponticelli; colorist, Oscar Celestini; letterer, Clem Robins; editor, Pornsak Pichetshote; publisher, Vertigo.