As the title suggests, the newest issue of Memoir fills in the blanks that have haunted both the reader and the citizens of the fictional town of Lowesville. Whether or not the personal story of journalist Trent MacGowan comes to an end is yet to be seen.
To unfamiliar readers, Memoir tells the story of a Midwest farming town that woke up one morning three years ago with no memories. None. News outlets around the country first broadcast the town as a sensation and then a hoax. Now, MacGowan is the only one seeking any answers with the help of Bob, the one man blessed with any memory. Their investigation leads us to a mysterious house and many answers — the answers to the great memory wiping and to the identity to Mary Ann, the self-professed Daughter of God.
I won’t spoil anything. I’ll briefly address the story and art.
Writer Ben McCool likes puzzle pieces. While Trent stands outside the house where the source of the mystery resides, his own flashbacks to his childhood reveal a connection and a clue to the identity of the “beasts” that reside in the forest, which connect to Mary Ann, which plays a part in the climax in that very mysterious house. One peg clicks into another gap. The segments blossom out into the full picture, albeit not a very clear one. I had to read the issue twice to fully understand Trent’s plan involving “the witch” and the suspense-filled ending. Not every question was answered, but most answers were intriguing.
Artist Nikki Cook’s work has been referred to by other reviewers as “moody,” and I would have to agree. It’s also very surprisingly alive with shadows and backgrounds. The characters’ crude faces appear slightly cadaverous compared to the flowing etches designed into the very floors and walls that surround them. This emphasis on setting and background reveals that Memoir is really about tone, not necessarily about characters. Mystery. Horror. Revelation. That’s what I took away from this issue.
My biggest question: I thought this was supposed to be a six-part series, but another promised chapter titled “Dreams” appears to be next. We shall see.
If you love a mystery with a supernatural David Lynch-like twist, you might dig Memoir #6.