Filed under: Comic Reviews, Indie Comics | Tags: Beast of Barton, John Grieve
John Grieve writes & illustrates a bit of comic book escapism in The Beast of Barton, a lighthearted mix of rhyming poetry and medieval myth.
Scripted to try and keep lines two and four in rhyming sync is an art in itself and John Grieves manages to hit the those fairly successfully across this story he’s created. So what is the story and what is “the beast”? – well it’s a typical tale of hearsay & legend merging to steal some of the King’s limelight with the residents of his kingdom fearing the mysterious “beast” in the cave on a hill. His ego kicks in and he’s soon setting off to slay the beast. A month passes with king missing and presumed dead but there’s more to be said on this as a stranger wanders into town, I say stranger but it’s a goat in a cloak and in the context of the story, it makes more sense than you might think.
The goat brings stories of what happened in the cave and the hope that the King is still there…..and the masses react as you’d expect – by chasing the stranger out of town and spending the coming years making a villain of him…..crowds are funny things eh? Years pass and the rumours of the king rear their head again as the story closes out. A short story with a strongly written poetry-style to guide you through the events and while I initially thought the combo of comic & poetry would feel far too short, it somehow manages to fill out the book far more than I expected. Artwork is clean with a handful of muted colours in use that help build the world and it’s mythical tones well. Fun escapism that’s fun to read and a strong hint at a sequel…..which I’m hoping does become a reality…..more kings and goats are needed in comics anyway 🙂
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