Written by: Cullen Bunn
Illustrated by: Jonas Scharf
Lettering by: Ed Dukeshire
Colours by: Alex Guimaraes
Published by: BOOM! Studios
From the cover and the pitch I thought that this comic was going to be a classic necromancy horror story but it actually turned out to be so much more than that; an interesting and emotional story about a small family business dealing in drugs made from the dead and fighting a mafia takeover – typical small business stuff, right?
The art work is perfectly matched for the genre, nothing too bubbly and bright but it isn’t annoyingly dark so you can’t really see a single thing that is going on. The contrasts between light and dark and perfect for commanding the tone of the comic.
At the end of this issue there is an emotional twist that is sure to tug on your heartstrings and answers a few questions which popped up during the reading of the comic, but I won’t spoil it for you. Just know that it almost jerked a few tears in me. Which brings me onto how quickly I was invested in the lives of this family, despite there being quite a few of them including three brothers of similar age, Leon, Wade and Brae, they all had such differing personalities that each of them stood out. By the end of the comic I seriously cared about this family and the outcome of their unsavoury business.
I also loved the fact that the women in the family are having a large say in the operation, all too often in crime and death themed comics women take a back seat but they are there. Mother, Grace, being the head of the business and the sister, Brigitte, being the creator of the drug known as ‘Ash’.
Admittedly a few things made me a little confused throughout the comic, such as a scene where I drug using meets his untimely end in a rather unexplained way. However, it is almost impossible to have a first issue without having queries and I can only imagine that these questions are going to be answered as the story unfolds. So in that way they are less confusions and more curiosities which I hope are answered as the comic continues.
If you are in the mood for a dark story with plenty of interesting character I would highly recommend this comic. I, for one, cannot wait to see where the story goes.