Writer: Todd McFarlane
Artist: Brett Booth
Inker: Adelso Corona
Colorist: Ivan Nunes
Letterer: Tom Orzechowski
Cover Artists: Chris Stevens & Brett Booth
Release Date: June 14, 2023
Taylor and Gunslinger–aided by Dakota and her dinosaurs–battle Clown, his minions, and the Violator. How did we get to this epic battle? Let’s charge into Gunslinger Spawn #21 and find out!
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After four pages filled with Spawns, dinosaurs, and Taylor wielding a sword, we travel back in time. Like us, Taylor wants answers, but Gunslinger wants a snooze. For the best of reasons, Gunslinger blew up his life. Now they’re living on the run and teaming up with a woman he doesn’t trust. Dakota tries to find common ground with Taylor by explaining they’ve both had terrible fathers. She hopes to capture Clown and bring him to Spawn. Taking him and Violator out of action will benefit the good guys in this war Gaia has unleashed. But Taylor keeps confusing Gunslinger, so the 19th Century hellspawn finally asks, “Dinosaurs? What are dinosaurs?
Predatory dinosaurs charge across Omega Island in Gunslinger Spawn #21. Taylor rides one wielding a sword. Gunslinger leaps through the air, firing the modern weapons Spawn gave him. Can Violator’s tusks, multiple rows of teeth, and fierce claws take on Dakota’s dinosaurs? The monster’s red-hot eyes suggest he’s burning to try. Aside from his minions, which look like miniature versions of himself, Big And Tall Clown stands indomitable. He lifts his sombrero-wearing daughter by the neck like Darth Vader questions rebel leaders and punches away with his other fist. Gunslinger hits a robot or an armored soldier. The broken bodies of similar soldiers litter the ground, along with fallen dinosaurs. Whether their armored humans, spawns, or robots, green liquid bursts forth when Gunslinger shoots them.
Vibrant and electrifying colors heighten the action in Gunslinger Spawn #21. Gunslinger’s red cap (with an Image logo) and trench coat stand out against his black shirt, boots, and gray pants. The tiny purple dinosaur sprawled on his chest looks like it belongs there. Taylor’s orange-red hair reminds me of the color Gunslinger’s coat often turns in battle. Sunlight bleaches black-masked Dakota when she grabs Taylor from behind, pushing the freaked-out young man to the forefront. Yet she shines with color when the purple dinosaur leaps onto her shoulders. Do its claws dig into her maroon jacket? While weapons hang from holsters, her black top, exposed midriff, and blue pants suggest she’s as vulnerable as Taylor.
Brown narrative boxes feature yellow upper-case letters. Black uppercase letters ride through Gunslinger Spawn #21 in white dialogue balloons. Blocky yellow sound effects help us hear Dakota try to knock some sense into Taylor, the click of Gunslinger pulling the trigger when Taylor calls him dumb, and the reports when the hellspawn cowboy shoots robots, minions, and monsters. White lowercase letters in black narrative boxes provide helpful links to related events in previous issues.
Gunslinger Spawn #21 is a fast and furious team-up with links to recent events in The Scorched. It features dinosaurs, the Clown and his minions, and Violator. It’s frustrating that it starts with such an epic battle, goes back in time to show the planning stages, and ends before events in the opening pages. Still, all the Spawn books are frustrating, as they always leave you wanting to know more.