Welcome to our very first review of some indie comics that were submitted to us by Bleeding Ink Comics. Since we’re testing the waters with these we decided to club Comics with Movies, and we hope you’ll enjoy this sub-section enough for us to commit to a full-fledged Comics Review.
Our intrepid young comic book and super hero geek Anubhav Dasgupta flips through some of the titles sent in to us for review and tells you what’s the score on them.
Chapel is a Noire-tinged Cyberpunk story that desperately wants to be a good comic, but it just isn’t one.
Firstly, the story isn’t anything new. We’ve seen similar themes and characters in comics like Frank Miller’s Hardboiled. And the way it has been executed feels quite similar to that one as well.
Secondly, in a Noire, the protagonist is supposed to be a morally ambiguous anti-hero-type, but here, the protagonist, a detective called Chapel, while fulfilling all those norms just isn’t a character you care for.
We are introduced to him as he shoots down a sentient robot for no reason whatsoever. The rest of the plot is just an excuse to show how much he hates robots and no reason is given for his Robot-hate. And at the end there’s a twist that anyone who is even remotely familiar with comics could have smelled from miles away.
The main problem with Chapel is that we aren’t given any reason to be involved in the story, nor are we told what makes Chapel behave like such a douchebag towards robots. Did something happen to him in the past that made him hate robots? Does he just hate them because they are unnatural? We are never told.
The art just works. It looks great, but I think the artist still has a long way to go before he nails it. He has talent, as evidenced by his brilliant use of blacks and whites and sketchy artwork, which nearly perfectly marries Noire and Cyberpunk. I’m looking forward to more from this guy.
But it isn’t hopeless. It’s issue #1 after all and there’s a lot of room for this comic to improve. But this issue just isn’t compelling.
Sensory Distortion is very much like a slasher film. It’s about these teenagers who do something awful, and then they die one by one in various awful ways. And it reads exactly like a trashy slasher flick that Hollywood craps out on a whim replete with stock slasher flick characters except for one big little difference: there is no killer.
These teenagers aren’t taken apart by a guy wearing a ghost face mask, rather they are killed because of this Native American fear-inducing drug that they took on a road trip.
What harms Sensory Distortion is that the characters are very badly written. You end up not caring for even one of them. And the subplot involving the protagonist and her abusive ex-con father just fails to make an impact because you can see the plot twists coming from the moment he is introduced. In fact, the characters are so badly written and the plot is so clichéd that I would have stopped reading if it weren’t for the effects that the drug has on each of the characters. It’s what makes this book so damn interesting and reading it becomes much less painful. Enjoyable even.
It also helps that the art is pretty good. It reminds me of Jeff LeMire’s art. Only a tad bit stiffer and sketchier. Sure, it goes wonky sometimes, but most of the time, it works. And sometimes it works really well.
The more I think about it, the more I feel the writer treated this comic as a mere exercise. He throws every cliché in the book at you, but he’s got this really interesting concept that makes you think that the writer was just trying out stuff, that he’s holding back and that he can do much better.
If it weren’t for the art and the interesting concept, Sensory Distortion would have been a torturous read. While I’m looking forward to what the writer and the artist do in the future, I doubt I’d recommend this to anyone.
Let’s get this out of the way quickly: Warzone is one of the most awful comics I’ve read in six months.
The writing is so bad that it makes Rob Liefeld’s recent work on Hawk & Dove look like Shakespeare. You hear that? That’s the sound of a thousand comic fans gasping in horror at the very notion of something even more badly written than that amazingly bad Liefeld book.
The writing is so bad that I don’t even remember any of the character’s names and I don’t even want to look them up because that would mean treading through 34 pages of terrible storytelling. The dialogues seem to be written extremely lazily; rather, they are just thrown around with absolute disregard. There is no creativity evident in the writing. And this is supposed to be professionally produced? Professional! My ass! I wager it was written during the summer, between Xbox and World of Warcraft sessions. Whoever wrote this is an amateur writer who has a very long way to go before he becomes a goddamn comic book writer worth his salt.
It’s a real pity the writing is so bad, because the art is fairly decent. I feel extremely sorry for the artist, because he’s done a pretty decent job here, but the writing… my god. The writing is so bad it could kill a fly.
Have I even told you what it’s about? Well, it’s about some War vets who succumb to a life of drugs and then things get complicated because the police find them, and then there’s a big chase, some treachery, and a lot of other things that I couldn’t get myself to care about. At the end of the comic, we are slapped in the face with a cliffhanger so desperate to be shocking that it fails completely.
The writer has a very long way to go before he comes up with anything even remotely decent and I doubt anyone would want to spend even a dollar on his basement dwelling summer project when there are much better indie comics that deserve your money.