I absolutely love this character; he's definitely one of my favorites to come out of Mignola's universe. I love that Lobster is a man of so few words and that his books are often light-hearted, campy and fun -- but still chock full of action, mystery and adventure. I think it's these qualities that make his character so endearing and it's certainly what we get to see in this issue. The story opens with an invitation: we pan out until we see the image of a man who has clearly been killed and tagged with the Lobster Johnson's signature (branded with a lobster claw). It's a great scene because you get a good sense of what is coming. We see the invitation, and the reader immediately knows that Lobster is going to make his way to the event. It plays out a lot like a classic, pulpy detective film.
Using Egypt, Egyptian mythology and an Epgyptian King's sarcophagus is perfect to set the tone of the story, too, since there was such an infatuation with Egyptian mythology in the early 20th century.
One of the things I really loved about this issue is that in some dark panels we see Lobster Johnson's glowing eyes. There's a great example of that in this issue (and it's something that Mignola uses quite a bit in Lobster Johnson's titles). It really captures this idea that he is lurking in the shadows, playing the detective. Dave Stewart's colors were awesome.
If I had to choose between a self contained, single issue of LOBSTER JOHNSON and a 3 -issue series (which is usually what we see), I think I would go with the latter over the former. LOBSTER JOHNSON: THE PRAYER OF NEFERU could have been a much more interesting story had it been spread out over the course of more than a single issue. I think the story was good enough that it had the potential to be longer, and it would have been nice to see Lobster Johnson go through the steps of figuring out the "who done it." Unfortunately, we don't get that here. Aside from the fact that the story felt rushed, this was still a decent issue.
I really enjoyed this issue, but I didn't love it as much as I normally love LOBSTER JOHNSON. Like I mentioned previously, I felt the story felt rushed. I think in general it's a great introduction to the character (especially if you're a new reader), but those of us who are fans (like I am) might be a bit disappointed. I think it's a great story and this issue had a great concept, but felt that because it was so contained, much of the story couldn't be flushed out. I wanted more, but maybe that signifies how great I think the issue is. Aside from the fact that it's short, Arcudi and Mignola are great at organizing a story and making it clear and easy for a reader to understand. Wilfredo Torres' pencils are paired with some beautiful colors by Dave Stewart, which really sets the tone of the issue. Overall, it's an action packed, fun adventure with a very interesting story. It's a little bit campy and very pulpy; so if that's what you're into, you won't be disappointed.