Wednesday, June 26, 2013

After Houdini #1: Magic + Espionage

Every Wednesday morning, I head to my LCS, pick up my comics, read them, and either I want my money back or I’m just happy I wasn't ripped off. Once a month, there is that one comic book that inspires me. For the month of June, that book is After Houdini #1, written by Jeremy Holt, art by Kevin Ziegler, lettering and design by Ryan Ferrier

After Houdini #1 is part one of five issues being published by Challenger Comics. The title is perfect because it represents the actual story, and brings in non-comic book readers/Harry Houdini fans. So applaud Jeremy for helping the comic medium. If you love black, and white art along with alternate history, and mystery, this is the book for you.  As of the first issue, the mystery involves an American President, Harry Houdini’s son, Josef, and magic in the use of espionage.  All these ingredients are put together to create one of most original indie books in quite some time.

In certain books, the story is great but the pacing is not steady, and the book reads too fast. That is not the case here because After Houdini has been brilliantly crafted.  Each scene is steadily paced, builds the perfect amount of mystery just to leave the reader with enough questions, and excitement to pick up the next issue.  On the art front, Ziegler’s art is fun, and works well in parallel to the story. His use of space, character movements/facial expression puts the reader right in the middle of each and every panel.  One element that reviewers always leave out is the lettering. In this case it is too important not to get a mention. Ferrier’s lettering is in sync with the story, and art. Every time Ferrier uses SFX like “klup,” “pok,” and “shink,” it jumps out of the page and hits the reader right in the face. To be honest, the SFX is so valuable, it reminds me of the 60s Batman show and nothing beats nostalgia.

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