Action Lab Danger Zone 2018
Written by Rylend Grant
Illustrated by Davi Leon Dias
Coloured by Iwan Joko Triyono
Lettered by HdE
CHAPTER 3: HOLD ON FOR ONE MORE DAY. Acting on a tip from a mysterious and very prolific mole inside the NORCO organization, David infiltrates an enemy warehouse where he is forced to square off with a terrifyingly twisted aberrant monster. World, meet the true 8th wonder of the world… ROOK. Featuring the music of Wilson-Phillips.
This only features one of their songs and now its an earworm that I want to smack somebody upside the head for. Otherwise I have to say this was a pretty amazing issue. Honestly I thought I was going to get annoyed a few times but it feels very much within character and within the story to see things the way that Rylend put them. So the structure of the story is extremely well done and the many back and forth moments here actually work in his favour, Rylend’s, because if it were too few or a few more then things wouldn’t be as impactful as they are now.
I find it very interesting to see the mindset of a man whose machismo is such that being an Aberrant has given him the idea that he’d forever be unbeatable. Relying upon that which makes him special to solve his problems, many of which he creates himself. Rylend does a truly magnificent job on the characterisation here and showing us the swift and sudden seeming downfall of a man and his ego. I was kind of shocked, elated and saddened to see David go through as much as he does in a single solitary issue. That being said however this is a remarkably strong depiction through the writing and illustration.
What is it with straight (?) guys and bathroom humour? I mean is it funny, it can be I suppose but it should really serve a purpose other than to throw it in there. Now the drivers reaction and description to what he smells that’s where I laughed out loud! Otherwise I'm not really sure its there at all perhaps that’s just me. This scene does something for me that I wasn’t expecting and that’s a new character or aberrant in and of itself I suppose but he’s something that comes out of a conglomeration of slasher films though I like to think he’d fit into the Hatchet universe extremely well. I love when the unexpected happens!
Also I love the interiors here. I am impressed by the way that the varying weights in the linework are used to be strong and bold while still being able to denote a lot musculature. The attention to detail that we see is fantastic, like stress fractures in the vehicles or in the way clothes fit heck even stubble or hair for that matter all have this nice appeal to them. The utilisation of page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels shows off a nice eye for storytelling. For the most part I am pretty happy with the way backgrounds are utilised, there are a few places I would’ve appreciated seeing them but overall it’s well handled.
With strong characterisation and incredibly fun banter dialogue that we see not to mention learning how David’s parents died all conspire for some compelling reading. This isn’t your average fare and I think that’s what I like most about it. It is different and unique from anything else you are currently reading and that should make you sit up and take notice. While David struggles to come to terms with his own mortality and find his place in the world there’s still a job to be done if he can pick himself up and stop feeling sorry for himself.