I’m Aaron, and after a considerable work-related hiatus, I’m back again to bring you your next favorite digital read (hopefully)! Please, if you have any feedback, leave it here in the comments or contact me on Twitter (@Sully_Writes). And as always, if you have or know of a webcomic that you’d like to see reviewed, reach out and let me know!
Summary: Haunter is a silent webcomic created by Sam Alden. It tells the tale of a hunter that must escape after they happen upon a strange place and a stranger creature, illustrated in full-color with traditional media.
Story: Haunter has everything that a short story (especially a fantasy or horror short story) needs. The plot pits the mundane against the impossible without explanation, leaving the reader to ponder several elements of the story and their significance in retrospect. This is the most important mark of a short story. The audience must be left with an emotion by the end, and this comic brilliantly succeeds in doing just that.
The unease created in the pages carries on after the read is finished, reminding me almost of Lovecraft or Ito. It is wholly different in its execution, but the result remains the same. Despite looking very much like fantasy, this vibrant and gorgeous comic is all horror. There is a tiredness to the character conveyed in the silent storytelling and the steady, unfaltering pace. The desperation is tangible.
Art: Sam Alden’s art for this work is unreal. The ability to carry the entire story without a single word of dialogue, to present a character that the audience can connect with without ever knowing, is quite a talent. Haunter is a brilliantly colorful work of art, from body language and emotion to setting and monster. There are so many examples that I could give, but one is just the abundance of water/blood/grime in this comic. It’s uncomfortable, and gross. My skin felt wet as I read it and imagined myself crawling through the same corridors as the protagonist.
Conclusion: Haunter is a short read, and anyone who cares about artistic comics should give it a look. You will not be disappointed.