Sunday, April 4, 2010

It Came From the Discard Bin! #7: Two New Titles

By Jason Sahyer

Okay, this month’s column spotlights a few new horror comics:

The Waking #1
Written by Raven Gregory
Art by Vic Drujiniu
Publisher: Zenescope

The David Finch cover pulls you in immediately. The opening sequence with a father forcibly incarcerating his daughter plants a solid hook both emotionally and plot wise. But, after that things fall apart. A page dedicated to someone walking into a liquor store seems a waste of valuable real estate. The over-the-top narration pulls you out of the story. In the next scene, the dialog between the two detectives is simply painful and again takes you out of the story. By this point, I’ve removed the story hook and I’m asking myself why I’m reading this story. The story jumps around too much, introducing too many characters for what is billed as a 4-issue miniseries. The narration is uneven and inconsistent, making you wonder why it’s being used at all. I finally loose interest and skim through the rest of the issue, making a mental note not to pick up the next issue.

Victorian Undead #1
Written by Ian Edginton
Art by Davide Fabbri
Publisher: Wildstorm

How could I resist picking up a comic book billed as “Sherlock Holmes vs Zombies” and sporting an undead Holmes cover drawn by Tony Moore (The Walking Dead)? The opening is a bit heavy-handed but effective in setting the stage, which is basically Night of the Living Dead in Victorian England! This opening issue introduces us to Sherlock Holmes as he’s wrapping up the climactic act of his latest adventure. His antagonist turns out to be some kind of robot and unfortunately it actually distracts from the emotional mood and atmosphere they’ve set up so far. I’m hoping it’ll tie in somewhere further along in the series. Inspector Lestrade calls upon Holmes to deal with the rash of living dead, but Holmes’ efforts are quickly halted by some mysterious men-in-black from Her Majesty’s Secret Service. For both Holmes and I, this twist draws us closer, holding our interest and curiosity. Fabbri’s art successfully captures the look and feel of Victorian England without being overwhelming.

--Jason Shayer