‘The Clock: Volume 1’ - Trade Paperback Review

If series like Undiscovered Country reflect the times we are living in politically, The Clock reflects one of the other major aspects that is currently impacting life: outbreak. This series focuses on something that hits so close to home it might as well be standing next to you, airhorn blaring: an outbreak of an incredibly lethal form of cancer is making its way through the world, with researchers and scientists unable to find a cause or a cure. This outbreak has taken many lives and threatens so many more. One of the many lives taken is the spouse of a top researcher of this outbreak, and her death sends shockwaves as one of the brightest minds in the world is now so deeply affected by this outbreak that it threatens to completely derail the ability to fight whatever it is.

I'll be honest here: this series is terrifying. With such a massive loss of life projected in this series, it's hard not to look outside and see the same thing happening in our own lives. Reading this struck me and shook me to my very core, despite its initial release being before our current world health situation. It's just a lot to see, but despite that, it's still a brilliant series to read.

Matt Hawkins, both as one of the primary creators at Top Cow Productions as well as its President, is a brilliant writer. His concepts are always so unique and interesting, with this series being no exception. These are exactly the kinds of ideas that Hawkins is known for: big, sometimes scary topics that lead to some of the most interesting storytelling in the comics medium. I will also say that at the end of this volume, there is a two-panel sequence that is potentially the scariest I've ever seen in my entire life in terms of implication. This series is worth a read for that alone.

But this wouldn't be complete without the wonderful work of Colleen Doran whose artistic style really lends to this type of series. While she's mentioned that working on a series set in modern times is much more difficult thanks to the increased attention to detail, it should be mentioned that she knocks it out of the park on this one, bringing all the dread and horror of what is happening inside the pages of this book and throwing it directly at the reader.

This series scares me, both as a concept and as a comparison to life as we currently know it. But I've grown to trust these creators over the years, and the journey they bring the reader on in this first volume is well worth the read, even if it strikes a bit of fear in the hearts of those reading it.

Creative Team: Matt Hawkins (writer), Colleen Doran (artist) Bryan Valenza (colorist), Troy Peteri (letters)
Publisher: Top Cow Productions (an Image Comics Imprint)
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