Insane Comics 2016
Created, Written & Illustrated by Michael McNaughton
My first impression when reading this was that it felt, reminded me, a lot of Poison Elves by Drew Hayes. This isn’t a bad thing either, quite the opposite as that series was for me anyway rather groundbreaking and an excellent example of one man doing the writing, artwork and creating a masterful world of fantasy that mirrored real life in many ways. What I liked about what Michael does here is he takes a completely new, fresh approach to the story with Mr. Reed as our not protagonist per se but more like a principal player.
I found myself drawn to the idea of this man and what we see him experience. Mr. Reed is blind and has been for many, many years except when he sleeps. Then he dreams in vivid colour and reality, always of the same man as he watches his life unfold every night. A psychic connection to another realm? Perhaps and who among us hasn’t thought of or wished for dreams such as these to be real, admit it we all have. So this seemingly unimportant old blind man, he’s 76 years old now and has been blind the last 50 years so there’s some perspective, introduces us to this story in the most spectacular way.
I also like that we don’t really know a whole lot about Silveran, he’s a half-elf, half-human that Mr. Reed has dreamt about the past 50 years. Just what we’re being introduced to this issue in his ruminations, see narration. So his quest or greatest foe while alluded to we don’t get much backstory on and i’m okay with because what we do get is just enough for us to wonder, speculate and then suddenly realize hey i’m in and want to know more.
Part of what really caught my attention is Michael’s interior artwork. I love the look and feel of these characters. Mainly from the elf and his opponents side. Mr. Reed well he’s a little rough around the edges like a real person is more a challenge for him to draw. That aside I’m really digging the way he gets into these characters and the linework and attention to detail in them, specially their faces. There’s this love and passion that you see come off the way he brings them to life and that’s something you don’t get to see a whole heck of a lot. There’s incredibly polished and flawless or trying too hard and a tad amateur but this this has passion to it and showcases wonderful talent.
I like that how this issue ends took me by surprise and again takes this adventure in a direction that catches the reader off guard. Another twist to the story so we kind of start with one and end with one and if this is how Michael is going to write then yeah hello, thank you and continue onward good sir.
Very rarely do we get something familiar, yet original in comics. That Michael is able to evoke memories of past loved comics but make a completely fresh and different kind of book while doing so for me makes excited. Plus this is a finite story told in 36 acts so you know he’s telling this from start to finish through his words and pictures exactly how it’s meant to be seen. Nothing better than when a man’s vision can be so thoroughly told by him.
Check out www.insanecomics.com, www.drivethrucomics.com or www.comixology.com for ways you can order one for yourself.