Jason Latour: “A better look at the promo image for John Arcudi and James Harren’s RUMBLE. Coloring James was a lot of fun. I won’t be coloring the book, I just pitched in for fun. Hope I did him justice.”
HOLY SHIT BY SEAN MURPHY
Review: The Wrenchies, by Farel Dalrymple
Last week was a surprisingly great week for new comics. Books like Terraformars, Through the Woods, and Seconds all were published to great fanfare. But the book that came out last week that I read first was Farel Dalrymple’s The Wrenchies. I was expecting it to be out around September, so getting it early was a great surprise.
An even greater surprise is how stylistically and intrinsically odd The Wrenchies is. If ever there was a time to call a comic book a fever dream, now is that time, and The Wrenchies is that comic. In many parts, a gang of super-powered children, adults from an alternate dimension, and a boy from the past in a superhero suit all team up to destroy an ancient evil called the Shadowsmen who have taken over the world.
Dalrymple’s art is one of the key features of any of his comics, but in The Wrenchies he stretches and pulls his abilities in ways that are astonishing and exhilarating. With a mix of dark inks and oversaturated water colors, Dalrymple quickly sets the tone for the book – noxious, dangerous, mystifying. Dalrymple uses color in really cool ways – a concert scene in the first 70ish pages comes to mind with its mix of reds and pinks, simulating darkness and fire. It is clear above all else that Dalrymple has slaved over the illustrations of this comic, and the result is a true joy to behold.
The story leads the Wrenchies on an epic quest to find the poisoned and manipulated body of Sherwood, the progenitor of the chaos and the source of the Earth’s damage. Taken at face value, the book meanders through multiple storylines, with flashbacks and retellings. But nothing about The Wrenchies should be taken at face value.
Consider Sherwood – the story shows that he is the source of the damage and evil feeding the Shadowsmen. But is this evil world a manifestation of Sherwood’s mental illness? There are many potential theories about the source and reality of The Wrenchies‘ dark, polluted world. Is this Sherwood’s breakdown after accidentally killing his best friend in a drug-induced stupor, or perhaps Sherwood’s failed attempts to cope with the unexplained loss of his brother Orson? Conversely, the source of the fantastic story may not be some deeper darkness, but the overactive imagination of Hollis, a boy trying to navigate between his love of fantasy, his mother’s deeply religious ties, and the schoolyard bullies. And what does the end of the book tell us about the “truth” of The Wrenchies, if such a thing can even be derived?
With The Wrenchies, Dalrymple wrings out the darkness of the human condition and builds it up so that he can tear it down with his cast of wizards, ninjas, and marksmen. And despite all my questions, it’s clear that Dalrymple has created something fantastic in The Wrenchies. Recommended.
Farel Dalrymple's The Wrenchies is published by First Second (tumblr: firstsecondbooks). You can find Farel on twitter here, and read his series It Will All Hurt, which is set in the same universe, at study-group.
July 24 – 27.
I am pumped about it, as always. One of my favorites.
I will be kicking it with Mike Mitchell, Becky and Frank, and the gang at Gallery Nucleus Booth # 2743
We will have all kinds of new things for you! I will be debuting the new print called “Slayer with Cold Friend”. Gallery Nucleus will also have the first ever Hug Machine shirt called Whale Hug and new TMNT print!
For a full list of what i will have at the booth, go to PyramidCar.com
Basewood by Alec Longstreth
I don’t think I can talk about SOCIAL REPERCUSSIONS, EMPOWEREMENT OF WOMEN and PORTRAYAL OF RACE in a fucking superhero comic-book but there’s one thing i can talk about: costumes. Don’t get me wrong obsessing over superhero costumes is unhealthy but it’s my opinion that in superhero comics costumes really do matter and they are kinda big deal. You have to approach the visual look of a big household superhero from a commercial standpoint first: people won’t recognise Spider-man in a weirdly-designed costume in a mainstream book. I don’t know who designed the costumes for this new AVENGERS RIGHT NOW initiative and I don’t mean to offend them but let’s face it: Falcon’s costume is a fucking disaster. It’s sort of a skydiving gear merged with the most hideous and poorly thought out Captain America outfit ever: his Super Soldier costume. Remember that time when Captain America was REBORN and Bucky hadn’t sort of died yet and was still wearing his Captain Puert-Rico outfit and they were all a big happy family like Batman & Batman? I sure don’t.
The problem is not that Falcon’s costume is in it’s own right iconic and easily recognisable and that the new costume can’t live up to it. The problem is that this new costume has various different costumes mashed up or fused together or sawed together like Frankenstein. And that’s the deal these individual pieces may work by themselves (Super Soldier outfit doesn’t) but when they are put together you end up with a mess on your hands.
Other costumes are not so interesting Medusa is so ROYAL it hurts, Female Thor has a huge shiny metal bikini, same goes for Angela, and Iron man is like SILVER.
IDW to publish the whole of Hugo Pratt’s Corto Maltese in English, beginning with the release of the first volume, Under the Sign of the Capricorn, this December. The series will be published in twelve newly translated, over-sized, black and white trade paperbacks, and also released in a matched set of six original art-sized limited edition hardcovers, each containing the equivalent of two of the trade paperbacks. Of further interest and noteworthiness is the fact that IDW are publishing this under their Eurocomics line, which may be a sign of future intent.
Good to see this is getting a proper release in black & white.
Hellboy and the BPRD #1
Writer: Mike Mignola with John Arcudi
Artist: Alexander Maleev
On Sale: 12/03/2014
A bizarre series of murders and rumors of something worse lead Professor Bruttenholm to send a young Hellboy to a Brazilian village on his first mission. Hellboy and a small group of agents uncover something terrible in the shadows of a sixteenth-century Portuguese fortress …
A NEW HELLBOY SERIES YOU GUYS A NEW HELLBOY SERIES