Image Comics 2020
By Mirka Andolfo
Colour Assists by Gianluca Papi
Lettered by Fabio Amelia
Translated by Arancia Studio
The Woodsburgh Devil strikes again when another innocent victim falls into the clutches of the elusive killer. Meanwhile, Lady Hellaine invites the local bourgeoisie to a social event, attracting the attention of the powerful Lady Swanson. Subterfuge and lies emerge as the second chapter of MIRKA ANDOLFO’s new project divulges a shocking revelation.
God I love this woman and I haven’t even met her, she is without a doubt one of the most intriguing and exciting voices to be found. With her European sensibilities she is able to weave a tale in a much different way than we are used to. I absolutely adore how natural the characters and their sexuality just is and is never made an issue out of. This is how life should always be where the only thing that should matter is what is happening around you not who’s sleeping with whom or what orientation some needs to be classified. The way Mirka is able to engage the readers’ mind and where it goes is rather astonishing.
The way that this is being told is stupendously well presented. The story & plot development that we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is beautifully laid out. The opening here is intriguing as it plays into the story while staying a separate thread while still remaining connected. I cannot get enough of this book and this issue is a great example why. From the moment we see the Maid and all the way to the last page everything is crafted to maximise not only how we see this but relate to it as well. The character development is rather astonishing for this being only the second issue. The catalyst is really the same for the entire town and how we see the actions and reactions help shaping how we see them and who they are. The pacing here is sublime and as it guides you through the pages revealing the twists and turns along the way it shows how everything works together to create the books ebb & flow.
This is a gorgeous book point blank period. It has this romantic outward appearance and lurking just beneath the surface horror waits to burst through. It is elegant and demure while being strong and confident all in the same space and it’s such a nice tightrope walk that it has to be admired.
The interiors are divine! The linework that we see is exquisitely laid down and how we see the varying weights being utilised to highlight the attention to detail is stupendous. From the hounds to the cat to the detail in the beard or the dress what we see has such eleganza to it that it’s simply stunning work. Now I’ve made no secret that I am a fan of backgrounds and while yes I would like to see more of them, what we do see is rather well utilised. The way that we see the panels framed and filled is really quite remarkable while showing us depth perception, a sense of scale and that overall sense of size and scope to the story. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show a marvelously talented eye for storytelling. The pièce de résistance however is the colour work we see. From the pinks and purples to the blue's, white's and skin tones the hues and tones within the colours we see being utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work is extraordinary!
I love that we see the layering of the story with the different characters and their own storylines being brought out. The depth and dimension of this story has already captured as well as engaged the mind and imagination of the reader and it’s with baited breath we wait for what’s still to come.