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‘Blackwood: The Mourning After #1’ – Advance Comic Book Review

I really enjoyed the first volume of Blackwood, a sort of Harry Potter-like story for college-age kids dealing with occult and Cthulu-like baddies. It turned out the headmaster was one of these baddies and had put a curse on the new kids that their fates would perish with the school. One of those kids did. Of course, there was another villain, and it became a dark story of failed love in the end. It was fun.

The new series picks up within days of the first volume and very naturally reintroduces readers while pushing forward right into the next story arc. Or several next story arcs. This isn’t a series focused around one event, but a series of them, mostly character motivated.

One of my favorite moments in this first issue is when, having spent the first volume watching the teens go at each other’s throats, we get to see them bond. Evan Dorkin more than earned this moment as a writer, exuding a clear confidence in the story and characters. Each character has a very distinct voice and manner in which they respond to the events around them. Most often, they respond in an unhealthy or unhelpful way, making the situations they find themselves in much worse.

Veronika and Andy Fish, splitting the artist duties down the middle, give a genuinely creepy representation of the moment when the young adults face a ghost. I had chills running up and down my spine. Something about that moment – the colors, the slightly glowing eyes – just really made my imagination run wild.

We’re doing a #StoriesMatter initiative at Fanbase Press this year as part of the company’s 10th anniversary, and, for creators, I think it’s good to remember that – even though you can sometimes see someone else’s work in your own, you should create anyway. Commit to your voice like Dorkin and the Fishes do, and your work will stand 100% on its own – so much so that, as a creator myself, I’m happy to be back at Blackwood.

Creative Team: Evan Dorkin (writer), Veronica and Andy Fish (pencils, inks, colors), Greg McKenna (letters) Daniel Chabon (editor), Chuck Howitt (assistant editor)
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Click here to purchase.

Phillip Kelly, Fanbase Press Contributor



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