Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Treasures Of The ComiCombs

The end of the month means the end of the battle between two cool books, Nijigahra Holograph and Sons of the Devil. Which one will I be preserving forever in the endless shelves of the Comicombs?
While the release list is a bit thin I have some pretty cool books to pick up this week. There’s something for all types of horror nerds so read on to see what I’ve chosen!

Death Head #6 (Dark Horse)

Writer –Zack Keller, Nick Keller

Artist – Joanna Estep

The final issue of this mini-series is here and I couldn’t be more excited to get my hands on it. “The Doctor is in . . . and he's making a house call. In this climactic battle, the Burton family must finally work together or be torn apart forever. After all of the death and destruction, the shocking truth behind the Plague Doctor is finally revealed.”

The Gingerdead Man #1 (Action Lab - Danger Zone)

Writer – Brockton McKinney

Artist – Sergio Rios 

The Chucky of baked goods, this is one of those books that I just have to pick up. “There is a new designer drug on the streets, and it's called Confection! It's so powerful that it has to be baked into a culinary treat, and the abandoned Betty's Bakery has been taken over by a gang of drug dealers! But by using a leftover box of seasoning containing the remaining ashes of Millard Findlemeyer, the gang has unwittingly unleashed that cookie of doom: GINGERDEAD MAN!”

Haunted Horror #21 (IDW)

Writer - Various

Artist - Various

Before the CCA (Comics Code Authority) was established in 1954, comics were unregulated. While the history of the CCA and how it came about is really cool, that’s a discussion for another time. Haunted Horror is a collection of pre-code (pre-CCA) horror stories. Definitely check this out, it’s pretty cool to see stories from an era long passed.

The last couple of weeks I have been talking about Nijigahara Holograph and Sons of the Devil. Both good books in their own right but when put side to side against eachother, the clear winner is…

Nijigahara Holograph by Inio Asano

Sons of the Devil has a good story and some good art but it was inconsistent with the pacing and style. Nijigahara Holograph was excellent from beginning to end. The artwork is great and was never something separate from the story, they both worked hand in hand. This is a story that was carefully laid out panel by panel. At some points in the book, certain things didn’t make any sense and that’s just how the book is meant to be. A seed is planted and if you take care to pay close enough attention to it, something wonderful blooms.

After reading Sons of the Devil I started to wonder what the panels of Nijigahara Holograph would look like with color so I went back and skimmed through some of my favorite panels. A bit of color may have given it a little more life but some of the panels are so beautifully detailed that it makes no difference. One thing definitely worth noting here is that Inio Asano wrote the story and also did all of the art. This definitely explains why the dialogue and art went so well together.

Every now and then you will find a comic that deals with topics such as mental illness, suicide, bullying and rape. More often than not, those topics are done in a manner so over the top that it’s offensive. Those are all topics that you find in Nijigahara Holograph. Though it may be hard to stomach for some, all of these topics are things that happen in the real world that you don’t often find in American comics. Asano addresses these in ways that make them particularly hard to stomach not because it’s all done for shock value but because it’s so believable. 

I intended to read this book in two or three parts but was immediately drawn in and blew through it in one sitting. The ending made my mind explode and I have been thinking about this book since I finished it. I highly recommend this book and it is definitely collection worthy. Well done Asano.

- The Creature of the ComiCombs

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