Publisher: Heavy Voodoo
Writer / Artist: Paul Tonner
Release Date: 2nd July 2016 (Glasgow Comic Con)
Set for release this weekend at Glasgow Comic Con, “Nom The Demon Eater” tells the over-the-top tale of a violent warrior called Nom who has a taste for demon flesh. When Nom stumbles across a momma Demon and her brood, he sees it as a perfect opportunity to grab a tasty snack. The demons naturally disagree, and all manner of gratuitous ultra-violence ensues.
Okay, so the story itself is almost painfully slight, with almost zero pretense of subtlety or subtext. Nom eats demons, and kills any demons who try and stop him. That’s about it. However, rather than any promise of nuanced character development or detailed, intertwining plot threads, this is a book that hangs its hat on the not inconsiderable artistic abilities of its creator, Paul Tonner. And rightfully so.
The black and white artwork is top quality throughout, from the leering, drooling Nom (who I’m not sure is actually the hero or the villain of the story – I guess it depends what side you’re looking at it from) to the fantastically gruesome way he slices and dices his way through the demon brood with his “dirty great big Vorpal sword”. Limbs are removed, torsos are split in two, cherubic demon children are eviscerated with throwing stars – it’s glorious stuff, and Tonner is clearly having a blast with his wonderfully exuberant character design and creative panel layouts.
There’s a hint of Geof Darrow in “Nom The Demon Eater”, albeit a considerably less detailed, less refined Darrow. The near-silent protagonist ploughing his way through waves of enemies in increasingly violent ways? It’s Shaolin Cowboy if Shaolin Cowboy actually wanted to eat his enemies after killing them. Yeah.
Sure, the story is almost nonexistent, and any sense of subtlety takes a back seat by about the fourth or fifth page, but there’s just something about the gleeful execution (in both senses of the word) by Tonner that keeps the pages turning, making “Nom The Demon Eater” a worthwhile purchase for fans of well-illustrated, gloriously over-the-top violence.
Nom The Demon Eater will be available at Glasgow Comic Con on the 2nd and 3rd of July, but if you aren’t able to make it to Glasgow this weekend, you can pick up a copy from the Heavy Voodoo online store, priced just £4.