Rating: 5/5 – Stokoe Drawing Godzilla in Hell! Need I Say More?
by ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.
Godzilla in Hell is as straight forward a title as you can get, and what you get inside is just that. James Stokoe impresses on each and every page in this first issue of a five issue mini-series that will have different creators on each subsequent issue. After James Stokoe’s work on Godzilla: The Half Century War, he’s back again with an even more impressive take on the classic monster. Each page is an absolute visual delight and despite this issue having no dialogue, I found myself spending more time reading this issue than any other this week as I studied the astounding amount of detail on each and every panel.
The first few pages of Godzilla in Hell have Godzilla literally falling into Hell as he passes by the title of the book in big block letters. The main title page is a two-page splash with three vertical panels as the three words of the title takes up one panel each. Stokoe uses the letters of the title, as well as the size of the panels dedicated to Godzilla falling to provide us with a sense of scale and scope to use over the remainder of the book. As Godzilla comes to the end of his fall, Stokoe makes you feel Godzilla’s immense weight as smoke, dust and debris shoot outward from the impact. Each stone and cloud of smoke is rendered with as much care and time as Godzilla himself. From there, we watch as Godzilla walks through Hell and encounters all sorts of horrors, each one more creative and frightening than the last.
There’s just so much to enjoy with this first issue and it starts with the cover. I had ordered IDW’s EC Comics variant cover by Jeff Zornow. All this month IDW is paying homage to the EC covers from the Atomic Age and this is one of my favorites. The lettering of the title is classic in its oversized red and yellow font, and the framed image is just as crazy as the content within.
If there’s one complaint I have with this book, it’s that it’s just too short. I’d love to have a whole series that maintains Stokoe’s vision of Hell, rather than a different creator each time. Although some of the creator’s work I love, like Dave Wachter closing out the series with issue five, seeing Stokoe draw the different levels of hell would be an amazing treat that would make for an even better oversized hardcover to enjoy each intricate line. That being said, I’m still a fan of the creators ahead and I’m curious to see their take on Godzilla and their unique visions of Hell.
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
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