IDW Publishing 2015
Written by Chris Ryall
Penciled by Tony Akins
Inked by John Livesay & Bob Wiacek
Coloured by Leonard O’Grady
Across the pond audiences have thrilled to the televised version of Dirk Gently and they certainly know how to embody the works of literary greats like Douglas Adams and thanks to Chris the entire world now has the opportunity to revel in the offbeat adventures anew. There’s something inherently fun about the bumbling detective who seems to be able to use this holistic approach to get the job done seemingly through one accidental encounter after another and Chris’ grasp of Adams work and this character shine here.
Tonya accompanies Dirk through a tour of San Diego and as the two talk and Dirk speaks out loud about the area and it’s significance the people around them make the assumption that he’s one of those new walking tour guides. I love how the whole tour that isn’t becomes one and Dirk actually manages to make money in a rare occurrence. The whole tour he takes everybody on is kind of essential to understanding his way of thinking and how he tries to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. Chris manages to make this happenstance, or impromptu, tour into something quite instrumental in Dirk’s investigation and it’s done in such a way that you find yourself laughing and enjoying the sheer brilliant absurdity of it.
The tour leads the group to the Natural History Museum where Tonya is supposed to play the Ahktenkhamen Gala. Outside the Museum they meet two seemingly young men, Craig and Hote, and inadvertently involve them in the tour and the pair decide to tag along. I love the ingenuity here as people from the tour now with the two young men take on a Party Bus and peddle themselves to the Hotel Del for a party. Ya know these people have no idea what’s going on but honestly had I been there I would have loved to a part of this group. tour and party because this kind of thing happens once in a lifetime and it’s all through a series of misunderstandings that well holds up thanks to Dirk’s uncanny useless knowledge.
So how does Dirk’s tour and what happened in the Museum with the Ahktenkhamen well you have to read the story to find out. What I do love about this part of the story though is that the staff want the exhibit to open without incident and are willing to hush things up and claim that a gas leak caused a minor setback but the exhibit would open on schedule. The things that people do to avoid bad press and to lose face/money are remarkable. After kind of convincing the SDPD that all is well along comes Kate Schechter with the C.I.A., she’s a little gung ho and something about her kind of rubs ya in weird way. Something is up with her and it isn’t exactly Kosher.
Don’t forget the two serial killer’s or wannabe’s or whatever the psychopathic couple are because they haven’t been forgotten about either.
Folks this is why we read comics and why we seek out books from IDW and other companies because it’s fun, interesting and all kinds of unexpected goodness. Tony and company manage to really bring this to life and give the characters a visual personality so that even in the crowd of onlookers you get a sense of who people are and then there’s Dirk and his facial expressions and his look in general that you get this whole personality package just by looking at him, almost like Adams had Don Knotts in mind as this bumbling, bungling detective with his own flair and smarts who ends up being a hero.
Quirky, upbeat and completely different it’s a guaranteed good time.