Saturday, November 28, 2009
Stone Island. Ian Edginton (Writer), Simon Davis (Artist). Rebellion (2008)
Excellent horror comic with a great cast, sharp writing, stunning art and lots of gore being splattered about. Longbarrow Maximum Security Prison, set in a isolated and desolate moorland is where David Sorrell has been sent for the murder of his wife and her lover. Harry Rivers is his cellmate and somewhat mentor in the prison. When one of the inmates mutates into a hideous creature and starts to murder and devour other inmates and guards, Harry reveals his escape plan and he and David flee. They meet up with a few other survivors and find that they are trapped and under siege. The first part comes to an explosive conclusion, the second part takes the survivors and pitches them headlong into a plan to deal with the creatures at source. The action is fast, the cast determined and the story is willing to take a Ian Edginton has written a straightforward horror story with care and craft, the details are sharp and the threats are explicit and forceful. The central element of an isolated group facing an overwhelming threat is nicely managed in both parts, the different context in each case is superbly developed. There is a seam of black humour running through the story that gives the action an additional force and the cast a twist of life as they face their situations. With Sara McCandless, Ian Edginton has created a star, someone you would want at you back when flesh eating creatures are coming in through the window.
Simon Davis' art is stunning, it captures both the gore and the humour, the terrible transformations that some of the cast undergo with great verve, they are both realistic and impossible, just as they should be. The panel layout is dynamic and varied, it gives the story a great pace and allows the lurid colouring space to breathe and exert its influence.
This is a great fun comic, Ian Edginton refers to it a a "gore soaked guilty pleasure", any comic created with this level of care, craft and talent leaves no one with anything to be guilty about the abundant pleasure it provides.