By Terry Moore (art, writer)

After a slow start, this series is beginning to find its legs. Terry Moore covers a lot of ground giving all the major players (thus far) a good amount of exposure. The time given to the supporting cast aren’t character building moments, but instead set up sub-plots and motives. I know it’s too early to say this, but this is the strongest issue of the series so far. In perfect Terry Moore fashion, we’re given high emotional moments and the exposing of character flaws.

Julie, rightfully so, is the person we spend the most time with. The opening of the issue immediately goes for a gut punch as she visits her mentally ill sister, Pam. As ill as Pam is, there’s a connection that cannot be denied once she’s exposed to Julie’s secret. Later on, Julie’s vulnerability is further exploited when she confronts her soon to be ex-husband, who wants nothing to do with her. As she tries to open herself up to him and reconcile what’s left of their marriage, he gives her the cold shoulder, blasting her flaws, personal tragedies, and her last ditch effort to “seduce” him. We may not have seen Julie’s closet of skeletons, but the emotional ringing she goes through in this scene is pretty rough.

Perhaps the only plot left untouched is the metal that’s grafted itself onto Julie. We learn little to nothing more of the substance other than it’s dangerous and could have destructive ramifications in the long-term. Other than that, it’s put more in the background. And I’m fine with that – I’ll take the character driven moments any day. This time around, they feel a lot more natural than ridiculous scene we were given last issue with Julie in the hospital.

Echo #3 has an excellent balance of plot movement and character development. It reads at a brisk pace and Moore’s art strongly compliments the high drama that takes place at the beginning and end of the issue. My only complaint is the lettering which gets a bit shaky at times. Otherwise, it’s a fine issue that’s sure to satisfy. It won’t answer any lingering questions, but it does move the story forward. (Grade: A-)

– J. Montes