Comics: Rough Riders: Ride Or Die #4 - Reviewed

Rough Riders: Ride or Die #4 is the finale of AfterShock’s new Rough Riders series, which is about a group of American legends who team up to save America from some of its greatest and otherworldly threats. The group consists of Teddy Roosevelt, Annie Oakley, Thomas Edison, Jack Johnson, Harry Houdini, and Monk Eastman. Ride or Die is a twisted combination of The League of Extraordinary Gentleman and Constantine, pitting these iconic individuals against the darkest of supernatural elements.

In Ride or Die, the group joins back up after a supernatural entity was unleashed upon the world during a seance. The only thing that they knew at the time was that the entity was named “The Master.” Houdini calls the rest of the group back together to investigate and stop what is being unleashed on America. Issue 3 saw them obtaining some much needed information about why one of the legendary Dutch Bokkenrijders has returned to settle a score with a member of the group. 

Issue 4 sees the group battling the Bokkenrijder and his army of the dead, with everything getting conveniently wrapped up in the end. While there is a great deal of action and hardcore horror violence, the conclusion still feels a little bit rushed for me. It felt like they needed at least a couple more pages to let the group struggle to come up with a way to ultimately defeat the big baddie and save the day. They seemed overly concerned with delivering the epilogue and setting up another potential story arc that is does feel just a tad rushed. Now this could simply be my opinion, and it in no way detracts from my overall enjoyment of the series.

As I have mentioned before, the art from Patrick Olliffe more than delivers, embodying the classic gothic look of the era while also doling out some serious graphic violence. Filled with a hefty dose of heavy black shading, intricate details, linework and hatching, Olliffe continues to impress with his detailed art that resembles the real-life characters. There are several splash pages that are crazy violent and packed with gore, as well as some terrific horror and demonic panels. The colors from Gabe Eltaeb continue to perfectly compliment the time period and embody what you would normally expect to see in a horror comic. Specifically in this issue, I enjoyed several panels in which green hues were used for the dead.

Ride or Die was a highly entertaining arc for the Rough Riders group, with an ending that leaves things open for more adventures. I'm guessing that AfterShock already has plans for the next story, which will be a terrific thing.