Comics, Reviews

W0rldtr33 #3 Review: Peering Into Darkness

Unravel the dark mystery behind the Undernet in the latest issue of James Tynion and Fernando Blanco's unsettling comic series.

W0rldtr33 #3 - Review Cover
Image: Image Comics
By: Javier ReyesFeb 23, 2024, 2:07 AM

W0rldtr33 #3

Review
Rating
9
Good
W0rldtr33 - Full Cover

Writer: James Tynion IV

Artist: Fernando Blanco

Publisher: Image Comics

Release Date: June 27, 2023

Page Count: 32

Format: Comic

This character-driven issue strikes the perfect balance between unraveling parts of the story's mystery and delivering unsettling moments of horror.

W0rldtr33 by James Tynion IV and Fernando Blanco is truly a unique comic book experience. While the concept of a haunted website seems strange on paper, the creative team has built a well-crafted horror story that’s atmospheric, unsettling, and engaging. Then beyond the comic’s pages is an intriguing augmented reality game (ARG) that fans are clamoring to solve. Tynion and Blanco are committed to creating a multi-layered journey filled with twists and turns for fans to endlessly explore. Apt for a series that explores the dangers of going down strange internet rabbit holes.

Let’s dive into my review of the latest issue of W0rldtr33 and unpack the new details about the story’s engrossing mystery.

Gabriel Winters

Story So Far

This latest issue picks right up where the previous story threads left off. It’s revealed that the mysterious person who rescued Ellison Lane from the FBI was the enigmatic businessman and mastermind hacker, Gabriel Winter. Amanda and Darren brace themselves to pull Fausta out of the deep trance she’s fallen into after getting just a brief glimpse of the Undernet from Gibson’s computer. While Gabriel’s plans to suppress the Undernet’s growing influence are finally in motion, it might be too late to stop irreparable damage from happening.

Meanwhile, Agent Silk’s boss is not happy about them losing the lead they have in a case that’s escalating beyond their expectations. With all these different characters scrambling to find answers, the power of the Undernet continues growing, and the mysterious, naked woman Ph34r quietly lurks in the shadows.

Ellison Lane get Interrogated

Review

As much as W0rldtr33 excels at delivering atmospheric horror, this issue changed its usual, plotting pace by telling a more straightforward story. But even for such a dialogue-heavy issue, each of the small conversations carried plenty of weight for the characters and story. Having Gabriel be the focal point for most of this issue, we finally get a fresh perspective from a character who understands the bigger picture of the Undernet. It’s through his eccentric speech that we learn more about what’s going on in the shadows of the comic. This was a much-needed exposition dump of an issue in a series that’s been very careful about revealing too much about its mystery.

As structurally different as this issue feels from the others, it still hits a great balance of horror and sci-fi because of the amazing art. The art team of Fernando Blanco and Jordie Bellaire continues to knock it out of the park. There’s a scene midway through the issue where we get a first-hand glimpse of what it’s like having the Undernet’s influence seep into someone’s mind. We see a more twisted side to Blanco’s art that gets elevated by Bellaire’s incredible color work. This scene also uses chromatic aberration to terrifying effect, making it even more eerie and unsettling. The moment was brief, horrific, and probably the most visually impactful in the entire series.

Fausta Sees the Undernet

Final Thoughts 

W0rldtr33 continues to be a must-read series for horror comic fans. While this issue is more talking heads than chilling frights, there’s still plenty of horrific imagery that sticks with you even after you turn the final page. Tynion and Blanco continue to prove themselves as another dream team in horror comics by building a world that’s equally gripping and ominous. With how both the series and ARG are developing, it’s been an exciting ride putting together all the different puzzle pieces revolving around W0rldtr33.

Why You Should Read W0rldtr33

  • The story is ramping up already at just three issues
  • Flashes of what the Undernet does to people are terrifying 
  • Fernando Blanco is putting out some of his best work in an issue that’s mostly talking heads
TAGGED: Image Comics
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