IDW Publishing 2016
Written by Ryan Ferrier
Illustrated by Valentin Ramon
After reading D4ve i’m forever a fan of these two gentlemen. This time around it’s a far cry from robots and saving the world instead we’re thrusts into the realm of hell and the story of Teddy Graham. Yes tongue in cheek and purposefully named this immediately says what kind of story this is going to be. This is for mature readers so don’t get your panties in a twist if you aren’t prepared for that. That being said I adored this first issue!
If you are thinking this is a story about what happens to you after you die head on to something else cause this isn’t it. Instead this is total and complete disconnect from reality and Teddy’s story about what happens after he dies and has to learn to live in Hell. Along with his sponsor Costello we’ll see what this version is like. Yes Teddy has a sponsor and it is very much like an AA meeting life.
There are some traditional moments thrown into the story like that guy from high school who you run into and think yeah this is Hell if I have to spend eternity with him around. Other than that I loved the whole concept here. It’s like a big ole finger at the religious types and Heaven is run like a business where even weed isn’t off the table and the demons in Hell have quotas to meet in getting the new recruits to wallow in the sins of their life.
More than a little irreverent this was so much fun to lose myself in. Aside from what Ryan is doing with the story a large part of the fun comes from Valentin. His rendition of Hell and the folks who are suffering and running the joint and spectacularly portrayed. I love the way he brings familiar, in name only, demons to life in a more traditional manner and some of the folks who aren’t even a part of the story but just wandering the streets, of a city looking very much like Vegas, just have this delightful flair to them. He really goes above and beyond in selling this story visually and keeping it strange and exotic while still what can be considered your worst nightmare.
There’s a disconnect between what Abaddon, who runs Teddy’s support group, and his sponsor Costello think should be going on in Hell. Between the two versions is Teddy caught up without knowing which way is up and how to behave. This issue wonderfully brings us to realize how this world works and it sets up the kind of story that will excite you just to find out what craziness is going to happen next.
Fear not we see both Heaven and Hell in a working sense as well as getting a good feel for what is supposed to happen. How Teddy died and also what happens to fiancee after he’s gone. All of this will undoubtedly be either ignored, used or twisted to suit someone’s needs however we don’t know who’s. Still the characterization is stellar and the interiors brilliantly done so whatever happens it’s really the ride that matters not the destination.
Crazy, out there, irreverent and completely enthralling you need to join Teddy on his journey in Hell.