REVIEW: Nowhere Man

Written and Illustrated by: Jerome Walford
Published by: Forward Comix

Nowhere Man is many stories, many layers, and many archetypes all rolled into one. It is a cop drama, it is a sci-fi adventure, and it is a Bourne saga-esque man-against-the-world festival of butt-kicking. It’s a romance story. It’s tragedy. But most importantly… Nowhere Man really really good.

Following the life of Jack Maguire, a New York City police officer with profound ambitions fueled by the legacy of his father (also an officer and casualty of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center), Nowhere Man blends reality with fantasy on a flawless level, and hangs the carrot just perfectly in front of the reader’s nose as it draws them deeper and deeper into its own world. The characters, from Jack’s love interest and partner Rose to the mysterious persona of Zade, are all well developed and relate-able.

The universe builds slowly, allowing the audience to digest each detail, piece by piece, while Walford holds back surprises for just the right moment. As I was preparing this review, I was reminded of a moment in the movie The Prestige, where Michael Caine’s character explains the nature of “magic.” First, the audience is presented with something normal, something understandable. The creator of the trick shows the audience something real. Then, the creator does something extraordinary with that reality, something that sinks the hook of interest in the mouths of the viewers. But the hardest part is leaving them (the audience) speechless, turning that something extraordinary into something that can’t be understood, that they never would have expected. That is what Walford does through the pages of Nowhere Man. He creates magic. And that’s the best way that I can explain it.

Also did I mention there’s well -executed time-travel shenanigans? I am an absolute sucker for time-travel shenanigans, and I cannot imagine what I did to please the comic gods enough to be selected for this review.

The art in Nowhere Man (also created by Jerome Walford!) is gritty and dark and fits the tone set by the story to the “t.” There is always something thrilling about titles with a singular writer/artist, something that flows on a more natural level. Walford does not disappoint in that department. The panels bleed from urban to dream effortlessly as the tale is woven, and frankly, the only thing that I can point out in need for improvement is the coloring, and I rarely found it to be detracting from the overall quality of the work. That said, the art isn’t exactly groundbreaking. There’s not a lot wrong with it, but it’s not likely to be the thing that blows your mind.

All in all, I’d recommend this title to anyone. If you like heroes, you should read it. If you like sci-fi, you should read it. If you like relate-able human characters, you should read it. If you like comics at all, I want you to read it. I also want a movie, or at least a TV series out of this thing. It is exactly the sort of story that lends itself well to adaptation (looking at you, Netflix).

Keep an eye on Jerome Walford everyone, because Nowhere Man is going somewhere in the world of comics. Honestly one of the most enjoyable things that I have read in a while.

You can purchase Nowhere Man from:

Their  online store
Amazon
comixology

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