What’s a good P.I. to do when he’s dead? Not since Grim Fandango has this important question been answered quite so effectively. In The Iron Spirit, Cal McDonald is drawn into a mystery that defies reason. Yes, that seems like the vaguest description of a noir story ever, but that’s sort of the point. At this point, roughly 75 years after the genre showed up, the things that are the most interesting are the unique spins that are put on the style. The spin here is definitely unique.
Cal McDonald, the best undead P.I. in LA, has a new case that starts off just like any other. Little does he know that this case is about to get truly complicated. So, still fitting the stereotype, but there are some really neat complications. Without approaching spoilers, the story takes a turn for the weird and kept me engaged. Since I can’t talk about the plot too much, I will discuss the art.
Holy crap! The art is good.
The art here is unlike anything I have seen. There are no real panels, just occasionally translucent boxes to give the impression of panels. The illustrations are loose pen with rough watercolors and the effect is perfect. The impression is somewhere near a courtroom sketch, but the important thing is that it serves the story perfectly.
Honestly, this comic is one of the best I’ve seen in a long time. The story and art combined to make something truly different and I loved it.
Five Zombified Philip Marlowes out of Five.