Publisher: Covert Comics
Writer: Dave Wimblett
Artist: Rory Donald
Lettering: Ken Reynolds
When Mike is forced by his mum to spend an afternoon in the tiny and somewhat depressing “Guildford Museum”, the last thing he’s expecting is adventure. When an accident reveals a map covered in cryptic notes hinting at a secret hoard of treasure scattered across the county of Surrey, Mike decides to gather his mates and set off in search of fortune and glory.
What would you get if you mixed The Goonies with The Inbetweeners? Well, pretty much exactly what Dave Wimblett, Rory Donald and Ken Reynolds have produced in this first issue of The Hoards of Surrey.
Unlike the Goonies however, Mike and his gang aren’t seeking the treasure for some grand and selfless cause. Okay, some of them are less selfless than others but let’s face it, they’re teenagers who spend their evenings playing Fortnite and their days bragging about drinking in pubs. This isn’t going to be the search for One Eyed Willy’s treasure to save their families as much as an attempted pub crawl with a little light larceny and minor property damage along the way.
Recently funded via Kickstarter, this is a project I backed without knowing a thing about, based solely off the fact that Rory Donald was providing the artwork for it, and I’m so glad I did.
This is my first foray into Dave Wimblett’s stories, and I have to say that I enjoyed every page. It’s a great story, the characters are interesting and believable, and you will probably recognise them from your own teenage adventuring. While there is a light-hearted and comic theme to this story in the first issue, there is also the promise of a darker and more sinister undertone with a mysterious cult watching from the shadows, eager to get their hands on the hoard for their own nefarious purposes.
As I said above, I primarily backed this Kickstarter because of Rory Donald’s art. I’ve been a huge fan of his Mignola-influenced style since I first picked up Madius Comics’ Griff Gristle a couple of years ago, and I have enjoyed his work so much that I already have half a dozen commissions and original art pages from him on my wall at home. The artwork is fun and inventive, and it has a dark and shadowy depth to it that really lends itself to switching from light and irreverent to dark and sinister in the space of a single panel.
This is a great, fun first issue, and if you missed the Kickstarter, don’t panic, there’s more Hoards of Surrey to come and I’m sure that you’ll be able to catch up whenever the next Kickstarter launches.
[PREVIEW ARTWORK – CLICK TO ENLARGE]
The writer of this piece was: Mark Scott
Mark Tweets from @macoy_comicgeek