Independent Comic Reviews!

Written on Tue, Jun 12, 2012 by Kyle posted by kyle

Welcome to June’s edition of Indy reviews. This month I’ll be looking at 3 digital comics I’ve received and read in the last few days.

Anathema #1

Written by Rachel Deering with art by Chris Mooneyham. This story will definitely come across as a familiar one, when you first read it. Two people torn apart by those who scorn their love. One lives, and the other suffers a terrible fate. The one who survives sees a way to bring their love back, but at a terrible cost. This is a familiar story going back to Faust, and even further if you care to look harder (the internet is good for something, right?). The major twist here is that both of the doomed lovers are women. Sadly this book received a lot of attention on Kickstarter, as the book about ‘Lesbian Werewolves’. While that’s technically true, dumbing the book down to two words never does it any real justice.

The truth is this concept makes for a great first issue. Terrible things are done by both monsters and people. We have a fully explained background that isn’t bogged down with too much text, and we have a story that gives us direction and drive… stemming from our main characters’ choice to sacrifice their humanity in the name of love and guilt. It certainly helps that the art matches the feel of the writing… with everything having a beautifully sinister and shadowy look to it. Simply put? This is a familiar concept, with an original twist. A great horror read, if I may say so myself.
Grade 8/10

Sanctuary #5

Art and story still by Stephen Coughlin. You’ll find the reviews for issues 1-4 in my last review roundup. The story advances here, but still manages to leave us too close to where it started.

The Sanctuary’s lion, and his tiger nephew, are inching closer to the truth. That aside, we have more characters just moving around… instead of really doing anything else of note in the issue. With only one issue left before the ending, it might be important to have everything rearranged first. Otherwise, I don’t see much that this issue has offer.

The ending will be the real test of how the series does. You can find all 5 current issues of Sanctuary on Comixology.

Grade: 6/10


Ugli Studios Presents

Written and drawn by Jason Lenox, David Paul and Dani Kaulakis. This anthology is comprised of two main stories. ‘Through the Eyes of Grizelda’ and ‘The Great Vermin’.

The first story ‘Through the Eyes of Grizelda’ gets the most attention, as it includes a page worth of back story (sans drawings) and a detailed map of the region where the story takes place. In the tale, we follow a Necromancer lord, conquering one city after another with dark magic (and reanimated corpse armies to boot!). We see all of this destruction and death happen through the eyes of the Necromancer’s cat, Grizelda. Novel, no? Grizelda also provides the narration, as we learn all her focus is truly on obtaining comfort, provided by her ‘Consort’ (the aforementioned Necromancer). The story does have an interesting twist on standard sword and sorcery tales… but as with most anthology stories, it feels too short to fully succeed for me.

The second story ‘The Great Vermin’ is more science fiction than fantasy. It follows a team of space exterminators being sent to earth in full body contamination suits, to rid an area of the universes “Great Vermin”. This story has an easy to predict ending, but the art elevates it to a point. It’s the well-drawn slightly-uneasy feeling that gets delivered on page. Had there been less of a predictable ending? I might have enjoyed it a bit more.

Grade: 5/10

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