Story: Chip Zdarsky
Pencils: Phil Hester
Inks: Ande Parks
Colours: Dee Cunniffe
Letters & Design: John J. Hill
Story Edits: Mark Waid
Cover: Chip Zdarsky
This issue of Crossover is a departure from the story we’ve seen so far, and after the epic conclusion of the first arc I think it’s come at an ideal time. Here we follow the story of Chip Zdarsky, or perhaps more accurately Steve Murray, the man Chip Zdarsky would be if he was on the run and trying to leave behind the version of himself comic book fans are most familiar with. So whichever you’d prefer, Chip or Steve, he’s being pursued by…something…he doesn’t know what, but he’s sure a comic book character is after him, trying to kill off creators for what they’ve made their characters suffer through.
It’s a wonderfully meta issue, and that’s saying something considering what Crossover has been so far. There’s something in the overall meta nature of the series so far that makes Chip’s concern that he’s in danger because of issue #14 of Sex Criminals (y’know the one that cuts away from the characters to show a conversation between Chip and Matt Fraction) wonderfully ironic.
Chip Zdarsky takes over writing duties on this issue, and honestly who better to tell this story? Crossover as a series has been focusing on the people affected by the event taking place and gives a more grounded point of view than your usual comic book event. That’s still the case here, but this is a different kind of story, focusing on one man’s fears that what he’s done is coming back to haunt him…but there’s that usual Chip Zdarsky ridiculous in that the protagonist is a lovable goofball and his concerns are that his own creations are pissed off with him.
Phil Hester and Ande Parks have taken on the art and they do a great job of depicting the classic attempt to lay low that Chip is living: his job in the local dinner, his room at the motel, but also the subtle smile when he’s recognised in the town’s comic book shop and fear when he realises who’s been following him. Dee Cunniffe’s colouring throughout the issue is as good as it has been throughout Crossover and I think both his colouring and John J. Hill’s lettering helps maintain the tone from previous issues.
Crossover #7 is a great addition to the ongoing narrative, showing how the events taking place in Denver are affecting those involved with comics that are further away from the epicentre.