Story by Pedro Mendes & Andre Mateus
Written by Andre Mateus
Illustrated by Pedro Mendes
Lettered by Vitor Mateus & Pedro Mendes
So this is another example of the joys of finding a self-published or indie published book and why I keep urging everyone to browse the Artist Alley at conventions. This one was sent to be by the writer and i’m glad he did, also because I’m fascinated by works of creators outside the United States. The worldview is different and while writing and structure may universal there’s something about the way it’s told that has just that different flair to it that’s almost imperceptible but intriguing nonetheless.
I’m a huge fan of nice, clean and detailed artwork i’ve made no secret of that. I think the decision to go black and white here was a smart move. It allows the art to shine, for the linework to be really appreciated. The attention to detail is extremely nice as we see the buildings and characters come to life. There are times where if you are going to use this style that you really need to make sure you are utilising backgrounds because that much open white space is not good for the story and almost seems lazy. So I would say to Pedro to use them more because the difference in the first three panels to the last three panels on page one alone was tremendous. I will say that the way we see the page layouts through their angles and perspective though were handled extremely well.
The subject matter here was nice to see. The story starts us off in Constantinople and the meat of the story takes place in Scandinavia and focuses on the Gods of the North. Not your usual suspects either though Thor, Loki and Odin are mentioned no it gets to focus on someone else entirely. I like how this unfolds and that there are those who travel the land as mercenaries to fight those things that plague villages throughout the lands. This is the story of one such group and an encounter they had as it’s told by a beggar for coin.
I think the imagination and creativity here is fantastic to see. The way the characters are represented, used and are motivated is interesting to me. The characterisation is strong and the story development is good, the pacing allows for the tale to be told quickly and succinctly. While we are left with a few questions about what we see there’s not enough cause to go back and delve into it further. A very nicely told one and done type story and I could see this be the basis for a series of such tales. Using said beggar as a bard, see storyteller, regaling people with tales of heroism and tragedy and each issue being a one and done tale would be a nice way to see the growth and maturity of these creators.
Overall this was extremely enjoyable. It’s solid storytelling by both the writer and illustrator and honestly this is the beginning of long and storied careers. While the story may be a tad predictable at times that doesn’t mean the surprises and/or actions aren’t believable and catching of the eye. I did leave me wanting to see more of this series and these characters and their lives/adventures.
Should you wish to get one for yourself, and anyone who loves good solid storytelling and indie books should, go to https://www.comixcentral.com/product/deiciders-1-wolf-man/