STORY BY James Tynion IV, ART BY Eryk Donovan, Publisher: BOOM! Studios
BOOM! Studios have an eclectic publishing theory. At times, they produce tie-in licence books; then they put out original books, with quality creators at the helm. On hand for the second issue of this series are creators James Tynion IV and Eryk Donovan.
Tynion weaves a story from the dark ages, showing how the ignorant and innocent were corrupted, at first by the desire to eat and then the desire to kill and be in control. Nowadays, this evil still exists jumping from person to person, or should that be one spirit jumping from one person at a time, standing as the big bad of the story.
As this is the second issue, things move at a fair pace without leaving new readers behind. The structure of a three issue run means that this issue is the swing issue, where the things build to the climax. This structure is a welcome relief, in place of story compression that seems to be the fashion which is geared to after issue TPB sales. Tynion’s dialogue, moving from history to present day is ok, with the big bad coming across as suitably menacing. Where I have a problem is the texting. This style of monologue has become popular; let’s call this the “Batgirl effect”. I get that phones are an everyday part of life, but I don’t particularly want to read a comic which features a lot of texting between characters. Where is the drama?
Eryk Donovan, sharing the creator tag, provides the art for the book, with a sketchy approach that focuses on the facial expressions on larger heads against slighter bodies. As such the book does have a cartoony look which at times feels a little out of place in what, structurally at least, is a sci-fi story. Donovan’s art is made better with colors from Juan Manuel Tumburus, who goes for a washed out, faded approach which takes the edge of what could’ve come across as brash.
I am a fan of Tynion, blame the Batman fan in me I guess, even if most of his work has been in partnership with Scott Snyder. Reading something non Bat related allows for, hopefully, the quality of the writing to shine. In this instance, the writing is as expected, even if certain elements of the story aren’t the most original. Still, the book is an interesting read and at only three issues long, taking a look at something new won’t break the bank.