Rating: 3.5/5 – A Horror Movie Invades Reality.
By ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.
I haven’t read much from publisher Devil’s Due/1First Comics, but I definitely appreciate the company’s history and their origins in my hometown of Chicago. They have a solid history under the 1First Comics banner that goes back to the early 1980s when they released popular titles like the American Flagg, Badger, and E-Man. In 2015, after many years in limbo, First merged with small publisher Devil’s Due to form Devil’s Due/1First Comics and here in Chicago, they attend and set up a relatively impressive booth at smaller local conventions, interacting with fans. They’ve released some new series over this past year and half like the new Badger series, the cool looking Squarriors, and now the first issue in a new series, Lord of Gore.
It’s written by DB Stanley and drawn by artist Daniel Leister. Lord of Gore is, as you’d expect by the title and the cover, a horror book. It’s a story about the writer of the last three Lord of Gore movies struggling within the low budget horror movie industry, while at the same time having the slasher star of those horror movies, the Headsman, invading his real life and turning the horror that was previously only found on the screen a part of his actual reality. I enjoyed this first issue and enjoyed the time Stanley spends writing about main character Danny Graves’ life in the industry more than the horror which is a small portion of this comic so far. At times the dialogue sounds a bit corny, but overall the story had me entertained throughout.
That said, for me the art missed the mark. As it states on the cover, Leister’s work can be seen in the Army of Darkness vs. Hack/Slash. More than the actual pencil lines though, I felt as though the effects and digital colors by Sean Forney detracted from the overall look. There’s plenty of dot patterns used within the colors where when the camera pulls away, gives the art a blurry look. Also, the backgrounds use a gradient dot pattern much too often and even certain pages instead of being either plain black or white behind the panels, instead use a digital wallpaper that gives the book a cheaper feel.
I enjoyed the story enough to come back and give the second issue a try, despite the weak art and corny dialogue. In part I want to support this company that supports the local comic scene in and outside of Chicago. But I’m also a fan of horror comics and small publishers so it’s worth it to me in giving this title some time to develop.
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
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