Filed under: Comic Reviews, Image Comics | Tags: horror, MikeNorton, Paranormal, TIMSEELEY
Done correctly, Free Comic Book Day is the perfect chance for publishers to gain readers by giving them some of their story for free and get them hooked. This year there were a few titles that caught my eye, including Boom Studio’s Hypernaturals and the gorgeous Archaia hardback, however Image had the right idea by producing a book which featured several mini strips to introduce you some of their new books – and the one that caught my eye most was Revival. However now that issue #1 is here, this isn’t quite the book I was expecting.
In a week that has most people talking about a certain zombie comic reaching a significantly numbered issue, I did think it strange to release a comic about the dead returning to life at the same time – however I was pleasantly surprised to find that this isn’t just another zombie comic. Describing itselfs as ‘rural noir’ this book oozes atmosphere – set in Rothschild, Wisconsin, this quiet and snow covered small town has hit the headlines because of the unusual phenomenon that’s taken place. With local law enforcement creating a perimeter round the town while they determine the cause, the outside world argues over science or God as the cause while those trapped on the inside start to go a little stir crazy. The book centres around Dana Cypress, a local officer of the police department, her Father – the Sheriff, her sister and her young son Cooper.
The setting and events aren’t to dissimilar to a good non-mythology ridden episode of the X-Files – what I’d usually ever to as a “monster-of-the-week” episode) which is no bad thing. The scale of what is happening to these people is the kind of thing that could have been told nationally, but by setting it in this small town instead we can enjoy the story with a small ensemble cast that we actually care about. There’s certainly more at play than we first think though, so there’s plenty to be explored over and above the un-dead. Since this is from Tim Seeley, the guy who created Hack/Slash, you can also expect plenty of blood and gore to satisfy those readers here for the horror more than the mystery.
With art from Mike Norton, who has previously worked on the likes of Blue Beetle, Booster Gold and The Runaways, it’s a bit of a departure from the brightly clouded spandex world that he’s probably most known for, but certainly does a great job of adding to the atmosphere to the book. Each of his quiet snowy landscapes creates that feeling of seclusion and once the blood starts to spill, there’s no holding back on all of the gruesome gory details.
This Fargo meets The-X-Files style comic isn’t the zombie-fest I was expecting, however it certainly doesn’t disappoint. There’s likely to be something in here for everyone since it contains mystery, horror, the paranormal and the debate over the existence of God – mixed up with some good characters and a great setting. Once again, Image pulls another original comic out of the bag – I reckon I’ll be following this one for some time.
Craig – @hastiecraig
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