Rating: 5/5 – Masterfully Told Stories; Beautiful, Disturbing, Wonderful.
by ComicSpectrum EiC Bob Bretall
I’m a late comer to this title, I’ve been hearing good things about it for a year, but had never picked up an issue. On my last trip to Annapolis I decided to change that when I stopped in at Third Eye Comics and flipped through a couple of issues they had on the rack. The art, by Tyler Crook, was really appealing. Every issue seemed to open up with a double page spread with an Eisner-esque “Harrow County” worked into the art. I picked up issues #6-11 and dove right in. I loved them. A quick order at MyComicShop.com netted me #2-5 and 12-13, which arrived at my home in California a couple of days after I got back from my trip.
Cullen Bunn has crafted a really great horror story set in the backwoods of the American South. Emmy discovered she is a witch on her 18th birthday and has an affinity for the haints that occupy the area (haint being a southern colloquialism that is a variation of “haunt” or ghost). In addition to the story, each issue also features a quick 1-page “Tales of Harrow County” story, often by a guest writer and/or artist, as well as a variety of entertaining letters from fans recounting their own encounters with the supernatural.
The opening spread to issue #13 is stunning, featuring a corn field with “Harrow County” spelled out in the corn stalks. A boy goes missing in the cornfield and Bernice and Emmy team up to find him. While this is a fabulous series, it’s also not one that I’d recommend jumping in on mid-stream. I’m glad I went back and read the early issues, there is a thread of story that is building and you’ll be missing out on some good stuff trying to start with this issue. That said, I would encourage anyone to pick up #13 at their local shop and check out Tyler Crook’s art. If you fall in love with it like I did, then you should seek out the first few collected editions to catch yourself up…then continue reading either in collections or jump to the issues so you can get that more immediate monthly fix of Harrow County. Plus, the letters page! That’s not going to be in the collections and I love it! This is now on my pull list and I’m eagerly anticipating #14. This series has been granted “top of the stack” status!
Reviewed by: Bob Bretall
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