What makes a comic book reviewer, twitter-holic, blogger or TV personality choose the comics they read? You can easily say it was an advance from the studio. But even so, would they waste their time reading just any title? I believe what draws people are two factors. And these are exactly what drew me to Haunted City.
First are the covers, even with the old saying that you can’t judge a book by it, in the world of comics, we do just that. This is where Aspen comics, as a company, excels. The Modern Age of comics had its so-called renaissance. It was only good for one thing and that would be covers. This is what Aspen continues to bring, magnificently stylized covers with the use of empty space and placement of characters, which in essence relive the glory days of comics. The two covers of Haunted City have all the makings of a 90s comic: it grabs you and hits you over the head and yet at the same time, it also utilizes the Eisner approach of centering the reader’s eyes to a focal point.
Yet, unlike the drab, story-less comics of the 90s, Haunted City brings depth and an engrossing story that is near and dear to my heart. And that is the second reason we read comics, concept. This book takes place in and around history and leads itself through the glory days of old New York and into the present day. The constructs of the story, without spoiling the idea, brings the realm of all “the boogie men” and religious fears to the forefront from vampires to voodoo to witches, even ghosts.
The look and feel of the book is top notch and can best be reminiscent of Vampirella and Spawn with a hint of Gore* to boot (*1 shiny penny to the reader who know that title).
If there is a negative to the comic it’s in one thing. Famed director, McG, is plastered all over the book since it is in collaboration with his Wonderland Sound and Vision. Now, there is nothing wrong with this. But in recent years, comics with celebrities attached tend to have a short shelf life mostly due to the fact that smarky comic fans just run away from a title if it’s not from a “comic guy,” which is sad.
This title has done everything right and deserves to be on anyone’s “buy pile” every Wednesday.
Overall, I can’t wait to get issue one in my grubby little hands. This book fills the gap of great story and old school comic action which has been sorely missed in recent years.
See full Gallery here