Comics Experience Digital 2016
Written by J.D. Oliva
Illustrated & Lettered by Richard P. Clark
DELUGE is the story of an undercover FBI Agent trapped in New Orleans and on the run from a group of rogue cops in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
I love getting requests from people to review their books more so when it's from a little-known self-published company or just you know through sites like, ComiXology. One of the first things I noticed when looking at a new series from creators I've never heard of is the interior artwork. That usually sets the tone for me whether or not I'm going to enjoy it or if I am going to have a more critical eye it's just a process I go through. I am pleased to say though that Richard really hit this one out of the park right off the bat I was incredibly impressed that the interiors were so good. So when I drove in and discovered that J.D.'s writing matched the interior artwork I was ready to go.
New Orleans, dirty cops and Katrina not exactly the easiest combination of stuff to write about. However the mix of characters that JD brings us if really eclectic nicely done and fleshed out incredibly well. Whether we like to admit it or not all the different factions of the people we meet in this issue exists and we all know it. So that the kind of realism portrayed here really makes the story stand out a tad more for me. Now I don't know how many issues this story is going to be but I do like that we don't waste any time getting to know the characters and who feels what towards whom. By going back before Katrina hit and seeing the interactions of the characters it gives you a better sense of why things happen after the flood comes.
There is one nice twist and a potential twist in the story but I think I'm going to enjoy a lot. I like that there's an undercover agent in New Orleans investigating these dirty cops and nothing can be done about it when the Katrina does hit so he's kind of stuck there afterwards trying to survive while these dirty cops run rampant. Also just like in any society not all the cops are dirty and we got at least one who may be new to the job or is just more liberal and her thinking and perhaps just better at her job and she's going to play a part in this but I'm not sure what yet and I like that too. I like that were introduced to characters who could flip either way either be pressured into following you know like a sheep or stand out take a stand and make a difference.
While no one I know will ever claim that I am politically correct even I was a little surprised by just how this story was put together and how racially motivated the characters seem to be. This is going to be a little hard to take for some people but it's brutally honest and extremely well told. JD's characterization here is amazing and the subject matter is touchy but honest and I have to admit that there's a lot going on here that is fascinating.
I mentioned earlier that Richards interiors are very strong. The use of pages & panel layouts, facial expressions and just the tone and expression he gets across really has an impact. The attention to detail he brings to each page is pretty remarkable and for my first exposure to his work I have to say I'm pretty much wowed by it.
This is a very powerful and strong story and it's only available on comiXology right now and I think everyone should take a look at it. Sometimes the most fascinating stuff comes from out of nowhere and for me that's what this one did.