Shadowline/Image Comics 2016
Created, Written & Illustrated by Colin Lorimer
Coloured by Joana Lafuente
Lettered by Jim Campbell
I’m a sucker for a good horror story the kind that makes the dark seem more menacing and that’s what Colin is bringing to the table here. I’m impressed by anyone who can write and illustrated their own stuff as well and the interiors and story blew me away with how just well done they are. Even better for me is that this takes place in Ireland so the speech pattern is one that most American’s aren’t familiar with but try as you might you won’t be able to read this without giving that accent your best go.
We open with the series catalyst where young Orla witness the death of her father at the hands of something supernatural. It’s an experience that will change her life and open her eyes to a world beyond the veil. Something once seen that cannot be unseen and leads to her being an outcast and a freak among her peers.
Six years later and Orla is a teenager and we begin to see how that experience has shaped her life. At school she’s considered a dreamer and more than a little crazy as she’s always drawing. I think what Colin is able to do visually to help tell the story is just as important and amazing as the writing itself. His people have an uncanny realism to them and the way he uses the pages and panels to tell the story is remarkable. I love the use of backgrounds to really flesh out the panels and some of the sideways glances at her are more telling than any words can be in how she’s perceived.
After the death of her father her mother moved the family close to her Gran. An older woman with one good eye and a keen common sense. They’ve sent Orla to doctors to get her on the road to wellness, sick in the mind would be how she’s seen, and her mother well after all the tragedy she’s at her wits end trying to figure out how to connect with her daughter. The characterization is spot on in my opinion and really goes a long way in being able to establish a connection with readers.
Orla’s an artist and a darn fine one too and seeing her pencil’s in her book on the page gives Colin another way to showcase his own talent and it’s something to see. While out with her boyfriend though is when the story goes from set up to it’s happening. The transition is smooth and the flow is awesome. Something big is coming and the lines between the veils of life and death are about to break. There are some family secrets no one talks about and we’ll see if Gran’s knowledge will help Orla or not as we learn she knows more than she’s letting on.
This first issue pulls you into the story beautifully with it’s gorgeous interior artwork and it’s otherworldly creepy subject matter. Also a young girl who must find her place in the world and fight the coming forces whether she is ready for what’s to come or not doesn’t hurt matters either. Can Orla survive the Hunt? Fast paced, exciting and with completely original point of view and take on the forces of darkness this is guaranteed to worm it’s way under your skin and leave a lasting impression.