Alterna Comics 2019
Written & Illustrated by Bernie Gonzalez
Lettered by Wes Locher
With his wedding day approaching, a haunted groom enlists detective Zeke King's services. But will the detective's help be enough to ward off a supernatural case of cold feet? Matrimony, murder, and the macabre come together in issue three of this new, spine-tingling series!
I am really glad that I ordered this series through my local shoppe. This is such a wonderful blend of the old Noir detective stories and that Repairman Jack modern supernatural thriller. I am not exactly a fan of the pages the way we have to read them but hey. There are a few things here that I absolutely adored which took me by complete surprise and in the best of ways. There is this incredibly comfortable feeling about this like settling in under the throw and curling up with that good book comfy feeling and it’s so rare to feel that with a comic these days.
I like the way this is structured. There is a very easy and almost familiar way that the story flows through the pages. So once we meet this haunted groom and hear his sob story you have to wonder why his former wife would be haunting him? If you have to go to a detective for help then we automatically know there’s something wrong with the whole scenario. That is the only given and as the story unfolds Bernie really manages to pull the reader in and have their mind work in ways that they explore all the possibilities. There is no sure fire way capture the readers’ mind like that, so that they go off script and think up their own scenarios and I like that Bernie manages to do that with such ease through the story’s structure.
I like the added touch of Gus and Zeke’s own personal life being a part of the book as well. It has that effect of keeping these stories as part of something larger, at least it does to me. So there are a lot things swirling around in my head and they all help me to understand Zeke a little better. The characterisation here is sensational and I love how that is incorporated into how we view the story itself. That we get to see it happen almost as in real time the reactions and decisions that are made make it come across that much more believable as we really get to see the characters at their best and worst.
I really do like the interior artwork here as well. There is this quality to the work that looks almost like some kind of cartoon, ala Batman Adventures, and yet is as expressive as can be. The way that we see backgrounds utilised here so that they are integral to how we see the story unfold and provide us with this marvellous sense of size and scope to the story. The mood, tone and feel the work provides is amazing to witness. The colour work here is superb and I love how it feels muted even when the brighter colours pop it’s a very hard thing to do. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show off a nice eye for storytelling.
I think the multi-tiered endings were another thing about this book that I thought was extraordinary to see. Weaving in surprises with ties to the what we’ve seen previously as well as the whole personal stuff for Zeke make this that much more interesting. The writing here is incredibly strong as the story & plot advancement, pacing and characterisation that surround this wonderfully different yet familiar premise is dynamite. Add into this the interiors that he also does so that everything we see is exactly what’s intended for the maximum impact and there’s a reason why this is among my new favourite series.