Writer: Mike Mignola, Scott Allie
Artist: Sebastian Fiumara
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Cover Artist: Max Fiumara
Publisher; Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: 07/08/2015
Regular readers of my reviews will know of my fondness for everything Mignola. That said, Abe Sapien is one of the books that I don’t see a lot of.
Abe it seems, is going through a bit of a crisis of square peg in a round hole-ism. He is searching for his place in the world. Sure his previous friends have come and gone but doesn’t that happen to everyone? In their place, Abe suffers a wandering melancholy which leads him to the Florida swamps and a grotesque tree and a fleet of monster frogs!
The idea of looking for your place is a trope that Mignola has used previously, most recently in B.P.R.D. The difference is that Abe is beginning to recognise how he may be connected in some way to the weird in the swamps, yet he continues to fight against it, regardless of the fact the locals at first seem somewhat reluctant to accept his aid. The writing is as you’d expect from Mignola. He clearly has great affection for Abe, who has been a regular as far back as Seeds of Destruction and the interaction between Abe and the locals is tense, fuelled by Abe’s feelings of solitude and fear of what the appearance of the frogs may mean.
Sebastian Fiumara is on art duties and does a solid job. I would say fantastic job, but unfortunately with the opening pages featuring art by Mignola or a very good impression of Mignola, Fiumara’s art kind of pales in comparison. For me, this isn’t necessarily Fiumara’s fault; this could happen when comparing nearly anyone with Mignola. If the pages in question are not Mignola, I would question the logic of using a “lookalike “. One of the strengths of the Mignola-verse is the colors by Dave Stewart, who again excels at creating mood and murky environments.
Abe is a book that doesn’t have the same pull on me as other books of its ilk such as B.P.R.D or Frankenstein Underground. Sure, it’s a well produced book, as you’d expect from Dark Horse, I just have no real connection to Abe. If I had been around for all his previous stories, I might feel different. As it is, this book feels kind of run of the mill when compared to other Mignola-verse books.