I grew up collecting comics. At at time when they were barely an afterthought I championed the positive impact they could have on our youth if treated like the fables they were written to represent. They molded my concept of morality and showed me that good wasn’t just an abstract concept, it was a lifestyle. Comics made me believe in heroes and aspire to live my life with a persistent effort to help people that couldn’t help themselves. Unfortunately my world moved on as I grew older and good and evil became parables, anecdotes that could work as fleeting muse, but little else. I stopped reading them almost all together when I revisited them years later to find that my favorite heroes had been reinvented or erased entirely and only shadows of their former glory mocked those stories that once served as the basis for my on code to which I worked to maintain. My heroes were now failing me as I had failed them.
Yeah, there’s a whole lotta cynicism here, I know. I loved comics. I loved what they stood for, how they made me stand for something and sometimes the sadness at losing that part of me is overwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, I love the new MCU and the studios’ achievements are definitely something to applaud, BUT I’ll never open a super hero book with nearly the same fresh eyes as I did when I was younger and to dwell on that is just an exercise in disappointment and some heavy handed painful sentiment.
There are some books that have come along that scratched that itch, so-to-speak. Books that defied categorization and put aside capes and x-ray vision for something truly unique that fell outside the paradigms of the visible spectrum.Locke and Key was one such book for me AND…Gideon Falls just might be the next.
Issues 1 and 2 follow two separate but connected stories. Norton is a psychiatric patient living on his own and falling deeper into a paranoia where he believes the city’s trash holds great clues to a coming evil. His faith in what were once believed to be delusions only strengthens as he sees the “clues” amass. Father Quinn is a Catholic priest who has had his fair share of slips resulting in his assignment to the tiny town of Gideon Falls. Both men see a dark structure commonly referred to as The Black Barn, both feeling its significance, even if they can’t quite scratch the surface of what it means.
GF plays like Lost meets Twin Peaks and doesn’t skip a beat blending its mystery with its weirdness ,creating a surreal and hypnotic narrative. With a truly engaging visual approach and enticing prose, it might be the most original genre offering you see this year.