REVIEW: Faro Vol. 1 – From the Chronicles of Professor Francis Kane

For so long, people have harped on about diversity in comics; about what roles the genders should take; about the level of decency that should be implicit in various comic book worlds of “good vs evil”.

Here’s the kicker:-

That same such drive for diverse characters also allows for books like Faro, where a good intentioned time traveller gets purloined by a demoness sex goddess, is beset upon in ravenous hunger and vicious violence whilst all the while trying to save Abraham Lincoln.

Judging books by the cover is something that we are taught not to do, but here flying in the face of such a rule, the cover pretty much gives the reader an eyeful of what to expect moving forwards (or backwards…it is time travel after all!), through the story.  Written by Faro Kane,  the story has a rambling  feel to it that adds to the chaos that is shown on the pages.  With so many artists on board, a different one for the six chapters that make up this volume, I would have hoped for an anchor to keep the story grounded.  Still, chaos is as chaos does and the rambunctiousness of all the shenanigans is fully fueled by Professor Kane’s desire to complete his self-imposed mission.  Along the way, there are a few surprises for those who enjoy alternative history.  However the bawdry nature of the story is never far away.

With so many artists involved, there is varied stylings on show.  This does allow to showcase art that you may have missed, if you stick to Big two of the bigger Indie companies out there.  Looking through the book it reminded me a lot of anthology books, like 2000AD, where the art can be so disparate.  This wouldn’t have bothered me so much if the writing carried the weight of the story. At times, it seems that the story take a back seat to the  idea of showing “cool visuals” by which I mean half-naked women.

Still, the idea for different artist for different time periods is a laudable goal.  With that in mind, I enjoyed the art in chapters two which has a J. Scott Campbell feel to it, chapter three which is clearly Pat Broderick’s work and the part in chapter four were we get the history if Haiti.  Here the art is crisp with a sepia look for the most part, yet strong clean lines are in evidence throughout in both the facials expressions and the frame-work of the characters.

This book is like a visual representation of the loudness and unpredictability of heavy metal music.  Listening to it, no matter how well-practiced or popular the band is, I can’t help but think that the only people who knows what is going is the singer or lead guitarist.  No mater how well crafted this pseudo-chaos can be, I always leave with a headache.  That pretty much sums up this book for me; loud, chaotic, unpredictable and head-ache inducing.

Writing – 3 Stars
Art – 3 Stars
Colors – 3 Stars

By Faro Kane
Publisher: FaroComics.com

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