Specter Inspectors #3 is a spooky, kid-friendly comic from BOOM! Studios imprint BOOM! Box. It is created and written by Bowen McCurdy and Kaitlyn Musto with art by McCurdy and letters by Jim Campbell. In this issue, the crew is looking for clues to their demon-possessing mystery in the Cape Grace Museum, but the museum seems unsure whether it wants to cooperate or not.
This issue has simultaneously been my favorite and the most confusing. Character-wise, I loved how splitting the group up into two pairs, Noa and Ko and Astrid and Gus, lets us see different sides of all of them that we haven’t gotten to see yet. Plot-wise though, the issues continue to feel just a bit disjointed.
I’ve loved so far the relationship between Noa and Astrid, which receives a bit more clarity in this issue. But even more so, I now absolutely love both Ko and Gus too. Ko gets to show how much he is along for the ride purely because he loves his friends, while Gus gets to prove they’re more than just the tough outer shell they usually put on. In fact, pairing them up with Astrid, who was probably very much like Gus when she was 10 years younger, helps show that Gus is a loving sibling and friend just as much as Astrid is all mushy under her hard exterior. I’m totally endeared by this group, and I hope that now that we’ve gotten a lot of individual or paired opportunities to meet them, that the group dynamic gets a chance to shine in upcoming issues.
The plot does continue to feel a tad disjointed. Each of the three issues so far has had a monster of the week vibe, but it can almost feel a bit like vignettes rather than a fully serialized story. The plot within each issue is clear; I know that they’re in this museum looking for clues until things go awry and the Inspector’s goal becomes escaping. But with virtually no reminders of the overarching plot, even subtle ones, I have to really wrack my brain for the context, whereas I wish there would be just a tad more exposition at the start of the issue to help jog my memory.
I continue to absolutely adore the art style and the great detail given in making each of the characters feel fully realized and full of personality through just their clothes, posture, and facial expressions. It’s really a level above many comics, let alone middle grade or young adult books. Between the character building and their wonderful designs, I truly just want to be friends with the whole group, so a job very well done on all fronts. The one thing I’ll say is that for an old, creepy museum, it’s a bit empty and not in the harrowing kind of way. I love all the shades of green used for the backgrounds, though, and there is a full-page image with an absolutely gorgeous night sky. The way the lettering is done for Astrid’s possession remains very creepy, alongside the way her eyes and face change to indicate when it’s not Astrid speaking.
I continue to adore this series, but it is definitely at a crossroads where the issue’s cliffhanger ending will make or break the series. It’s moving into the climax of its arc, and I remain hopeful that it not only ends on a strong foot but can maybe even see itself extended beyond a limited series. The characters and setting are too rich to only get to see for a single story arc. The next issue will clearly be a determinant though over whether the characters and setting can thrive in their climax.
Specter Inspectors #3 is available wherever comics are sold.
Specter Inspectors #3
I continue to adore this series, but it is definitely at a crossroads where the issue’s cliffhanger ending will make or break the series. It’s moving into the climax of its arc, and I remain hopeful that it not only ends on a strong foot but may even see itself extended beyond a limited series. The characters and setting are too rich to only get to see for a single story arc. The next issue will clearly be a determinant though over whether the characters and setting can thrive in their climax.