Skybound Entertainment/Image Comics 2020
Created & Written by Chip Zdarsky
Created & Illustrated by Ramón K Perez
Coloured by Mike Spicer
Lettered by Rus Wooton
After witnessing what happens to rule breakers in Stillwater, Daniel must come to terms with what it really means to live forever. And what exactly is a deathday?
I love this series! There is something about it that has this huge appeal and whether that is the town itself and the curse the townsfolk bear or that Dan has to figure out a way to get the hell out of town is up in the air and dammit his friend should be dug up and saved somehow but then again the outside world is fickle place I suppose. It is almost a modern day Brigadoon only much more violent and nasty and yet fits since this town in a very unassuming place in the United States. I am a tad surprised that these folks turn so quickly to violence and at some point I do hope that is addressed.
I like 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. We learn a lot through actions in this one almost as much as the dialogue that we see. I mean there are moments that you get a character and their motivation just by seeing them and that kind of synchronicity between writer and artist is utterly phenomenal. The character development that we see is sensational! I really like how well we are getting to know these characters and how much more there is to them that hasn’t even been revealed yet. It is definitely super intriguing because there are some characters whom you want to know more about and others you just wanna see dead so it’s well conceived, the pacing is superb and as it takes us through the pages revealing the twists & turns along the way it’s something of a nailbiter.
The way that we see the book being structured and how the layers within the story keep moving forward and introducing new routes is simply stunning. How everything works together to create the story’s ebb & flow is simply beautiful. There is a dance here and how it’s being led around the ballroom keeps the viewers attention enrapt upon them.
The interiors here are fantastic. The linework we see is clean and crisp and with the varying weights being utilised to showcase the detail work is exquisitely rendered. Also that the backgrounds have as much detail as the people do makes me jump for joy i mean the buildings with their aging marks just add so much character. The utilisation of the page layouts is really interesting and then how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show such a talented and remarkable eye for storytelling. The colour work is great as well. How we see the various hues and tones within the colours being utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work is exceptionally rendered. The choice of colours as well and how they help define someone with just a glance shouldn’t be overlooked because the skill level is amazing.
This story was an enigma to me when it started and it crescendoed with the final pages of the first issue. From there all bets are off because there are so many elements that may seem familiar but with how they are presented are still completely fresh and new. All I know is that I have to blank out my mind when I read this and let the story take over and pull me along for this unabridged wild ride. This is the epitome of what happens when creators unleash their dreams on us.