Review – Bad Blood #1 (Of 5) (Dark Horse Comics)

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Writers: Jonathan Maberry
Artists: Tyler Crook
Release Date: 31st December 2013

Teenagers Trick and Kyle were born within minutes of each other and have grown up on the same street. As school friends, teammates and neighbours they’ve formed a deep, unshakeable bond. Unfortunately, Trick has cancer. While Kyle remains a solid and reliable friend – one of the only people who still talks to Trick as a person and not a cancer patient – Trick’s health is deteriorating and he is becoming more and more depressed and withdrawn.

The script by Jonathan Maberry is well observed, showing the pain caused by cancer to its sufferers and their loved ones. In a short space of time, Maberry establishes the relationship between Kyle and Trick, before pulling the rug from under the reader’s feet. A simple, heartfelt story takes a turn for the horrific & surreal with the shocking introduction of vampires.

Maberry’s tightly crafted script is wonderfully complemented by Tyler Crook’s artwork which is beautifully expressive. Emotional truths are elegantly articulated by character’s facial expressions and postures, while settings are equally well done. Locations such as Trick’s bedroom or a Goth nightclub are teeming with detail and help it seem like they exist outside of the story. With its clean lines and old skool colours, Crook’s art is reminiscent of a cross between Herge & Edvard Munch.

It’s frankly stunning work, equally at home detailing suburban mundanity as it is with the more fantastical, horror beats. The artwork is reason enough to buy this book but when combined with Maberry’s excellent script this book is unmissable.

Rating: 9/10.

The writer of this piece was: Joe Morrison
Joe is Freelance film journalist based in Glasgow.
You can also find Joe on Twitter.

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