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‘This Damned Band #3:’ Advance Comic Book

Secondary plots and background noise are all pushed to the foreground in the third issue of Paul Cornell and Tony Parker’s This Damned Band. As the elements intertwine and slowly begin to close in on the hapless and drug-induced band members of the band Motherfather, their personalities begin to spiral out of control. No one is left unaffected.

What does that mean for the reader? The low-brow antics shift ever so naturally to something more serious, and the goofiness takes a back seat to something darker, something sadder . . . something haunting. The mockumentary and its comedy are showing their harsh reality; the deconstruction of life on stage and behind the scenes begins as the parallel story of a haunted band escalates. It’s like nothing I’ve read before: highly readable; surprisingly thoughtful; and very entertaining.

The older I’ve gotten, the more I look for a certain sophistication in the comic books I read. The type of books that, if you’re patient with the character and world building, the payoff is even greater than if the creative team throws one thing after another at you with no sense of construction. Not that I don’t enjoy the more raucous stories; they can be quite fun, but there’s something very magical when a writer who slowly draws you into their world – bit by bit. It’s even better if that world building and character development have personality, a point of view. With This Damned Band, Cornell and Parker have personality to spare and ample amounts of sophistication.