Review – Brooklyn Animal Control (one shot) (IDW Publishing)

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Publisher: IDW Publishing
Story: JT Petty
Art: Stephen Thompson
Release Date: 9th December 2015

I can just hear the pitch to the network: “Think Men in Black, crossed with the sopranos, and NYPD Blues, but with werewolves instead of aliens.

David S Goyer must have liked the idea anyway, se he has lent his name as an executive producer to the USA Network pilot that’s set to be made. Originally released digitally in 2013, the comic follows Brooklyn Animal Control which is a subdivision of the NYPD and functions as social services for werewolves.

BAC could have been cringe worthy and trope laden to the point where it’s unreadable. Thankfully it’s not. JT Petty, in a very small number of pages has presented a wonderfully nuanced tale of a community of werewolves, the Kveld-Ulf, and those policing them that has gravitas and a sense of permanence. The Kveld-Ulf are presented to us as crime familes on the verge of internecine warfare that there is this welcome familiarity to the tale. We’ve seen this type of conflict many times before, but this doesn’t feel too derivative. It helps add a gritty realism when we see a world weary BAC officers trying to put on his body armour. No slick ultra-preparedness, no BAC SWAT team, ready at a seconds notice. Just world weary “public servants” going about their day job.

Stephen Thompson’s artwork lends itself nicely to this tale. He brings the mundane to life quite nicely, and there is a real humanity in the faces that he puts in front of us. It’s quite refreshing to see a comic without any “prettiness” to it. It’s not grim, per se, the characters just look like real people.

I know that this is a one shot, but it definitely left me wanting more. It has laid the ground work nicely for whatever is going to follow, be it more in comics or a full series out of its USA Network pilot.

Rating: 4/5.

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The writer of this piece was: John Wallace
John Tweets from @jmwdaredevil.

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