The final installment of Saladin Ahmed and Christian James Ward’s impeccable BLACK BOLT series is here. BLACK BOLT #12 brings the resolution to the epic confrontation between our titular hero and The Jailer as well as Crusher Creel’s return from the grave.

This series has been incredible, to say the least. From Ward’s unique illustrations and palette of colors to Ahmed’s flawless manner of storytelling, it has been a series I will continue to admire beyond this final issue.

So, how did the events of this issue fare for our Inhuman king?

Well, find out, right here!

black bolt #12
BLACK BOLT #11. Page 2. Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

The Return of the King

BLACK BOLT #12 kicks off with a flashback to Black Bolt’s initial exposure to the Terrigen Mist, the entity that gave him his powers. We come to realize that Blinky and Black Bolt’s son, Ahura, are traversing the childhood of the Inhuman king. Ahura witnesses how isolated and troubled of a childhood his father truly had. Black Bolt’s own father conducted gruesome experiments on him in order to understand him. Thus, Ahmed establishes a mode of understanding between father and son.

He brings the series full circle as we conclude it within the psyche of Black Bolt, gaining a better understanding of his origins and how they shaped him. Ultimately, the entirety of this series has been an exploration of Black Bolt’s mind. We have come to understand his thought process, instincts, and sentiments. Now, the final issue pushes us further into the depths of Boltogon’s mind until we have truly completed our comprehension of Black Bolt.

The Dead Rise in BLACK BOLT #11

The Reformation of the Inhuman King

Following Crusher Creel’s “resurrection,” we come to find that Titania is imploring Creel to help Black Bolt against The Jailer, but he initially expresses adamant reluctance. His experiences with The Jailer have instilled too much fear in him. However, Titania reminds him that this time, he will not be in the fight alone. So, feeling inspired by Ahura, Blinky, Titania, and Creel’s help, Black Bolt regains his powers to utter the words “It’s over,” ending The Jailer for good.

BLACK BOLT #12 may not be the most immersive work of the series, but it is certainly a hell of a way to close out the run.

It ties up each and every loose end. We witness Black Bolt regain his powers and reunite with his love, Medusa. With this, though remnants of his old life have returned to him, Black Bolt himself is not the same man he used to be. He has been broken down, physically and mentally. He has been a guardian to strangers and a savior to enemies. The Inhuman king has changed in more ways than one as he has exposed his vulnerabilities and flaws to us readers. The world he once knew may no longer recognize him, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. Black Bolt has truly affirmed himself as the hero he has been known to be. He has become an identifiable character, and thus, one that could almost exist in our world.

black bolt #12
BLACK BOLT #12. Page 4. Image Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

The Many Hues of BLACK BOLT #12

Honestly, there are no words that can sufficiently describe the grandeur of Christian James Ward’s artwork. It is among the best comic book art I have ever seen. The organization of the panels is so intricately thought out. Each and every illustrative detail maintains importance. Each and every color serves a purpose.

Thus, the artwork of BLACK BOLT #12 and the rest of the series feels powerful.

It is powerful.

The Voice of Black Bolt: A Look at the Iconic Inhumans Hero

The art exemplifies Ahmed’s narrative flawlessly. Additionally, the flow of the imagery feels seamless. The action sequences never feel clunky, and the moments within Black Bolt’s mind never feel overwhelming.

I have written over 100 reviews for ComicsVerse, and I have yet to give a perfect score to any aspect of an issue. Sure, there are aspects of the art, characterization, and plot of certain issues that have come close.

Today though is a different story.

Ward’s artwork in this issue is absolute perfection.

What Lies Beyond

BLACK BOLT #12 brings a bittersweet ending to a phenomenal series. I am sad to see this series go. However, I am pleased that a series of this quality went out on a such a high note. Also, I hope that those who have yet to read this series in its entirety end up picking up the first issue and immersing themselves in an eccentric, innovative world.

Because it is truly something special.

BLACK BOLT #12 BY SALADIN AHMED & CHRISTIAN JAMES WARD
Art
Characterization
Plot
Summary
Though BLACK BOLT #12 is not the best of the series, it brings sufficient closure to a series that has done its titular hero justice.
92 %
a fitting conclusion
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