IDW Publishing 2020
Written by Rich Douek
Illustrated by Alex Cormack
Colour Assists by Mark Mullaney
Lettered by Justin Birch
Historical horror at its finest! The gripping tale of terror beneath the ocean continues! Tensions rise among the crew of the Vagabond as technical delays and mechanical failures frustrate their salvage of the sunken U-boat, Bremen. But, the siren song of sunken gold is nothing compared to the seductive power of the monster stalking them all!
I have to say that when you mix history and fiction to create something like this we are treated to the kind of storytelling that is not only extraordinary but also chilling in some new and unique ways. The idea of a diving suit that big and bulky is one that while ahead of its time is also something that brings images and ideas of fear to the forefront. There are so many different aspects of this era and what is available not to mention what is considered new or ancient takes on a whole different meaning. There is something to be said about the thrill of discovery as well as the agony of defeat and here we see it all right here.
I am a huge fan of the way that this is being told. The story & plot development that we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is presented extremely well. The character development that we see is phenomenal and as we see them act and react to the situations and circumstances it fleshes them out more and more and with the dialogue we get a sensational sense of who these people are. The pacing here is utterly fantastic and as it takes us through the pages revealing the twists and turns along the way it takes us on this beautifully unexpected and unpredictable ride.
The way that we see the being structured and how the layers of the story continue as well emerge new we are really taken on this crazy rollercoaster ride through the book. If this were a water ride at Disney the line would be eternally packed. The way that we see everything working together to create the story’s ebb & flow is exceptional. It isn’t too early to make the comparison that Rick and Alex are the new Marv and George.
Alex’s work on the interiors is gorgeous. To see him keep his signature style and yet watch him grow and evolve is utterly fantastic. I love the fact that Alex is able to utilise various techniques alongside the varying weights in the linework to create the level and quality of detail in his work. I’m a firm believer in backgrounds we all know this so how we see the composition within the panels being utilised to their fullest what we see adds depth, depth perception, a sense of scale and that overall sense of size and scope to the book. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show such aq masterful eye for storytelling. The colour work is beautifully rendered as well. How we see the various hues and tones within the colours being utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work is beautifully rendered. The creativity and imagination that is on display is quite staggering in both it’s realism and its fantasy.
There is so much going on here in terms of both told story and implied story that we are pulled into this in a way that engages the readers' mind, imagination and curiosity. This piques your curiosity in ways that keep you guessing as to what is coming next. There is this wonderful sense of awe & wonder that blends with fear to create these delicious emotions that swirl within the reader.