Thursday, March 22, 2012

Ragemoor #1

Written by Jan Strnad
Art by Richard Corben

When I saw this book solicited a couple of months ago, I knew exactly what to expect from it.  Richard Corben, while always brilliant, tends to stick to what he does best, and so I figured that a collaboration between him and Jan Strnad would lead to a good old-school horror comic, featuring at least one buxom woman who would have to spend at least some of the comic in the nude. 

Basically, that's what we get, and it's terrific.  Ragemoor is a castle that has a mind of its own.  It grows and changes, restructuring hallways on a whim.  The main character of the book, Herbert, feels that he and his father are prisoners of the castle.  When his uncle and cousin arrive for a visit after many years abroad, Herbert tries to warn them away for their own safety, and comes off sounding as crazed as his father is.  The uncle is not what he seems though, and has his own designs for Ragemoor.

This is a comic that could have been written just about any time between now and the late seventies, but that is part of the appeal.  There is a comfort in getting just what you expect out of popular media (why else would anyone watch network television), but it an extra special treat when what you expect is Corben's impossible to imitate textured, creepy, and beautiful art.  This debut issue of the mini-series reads like a done-in-one, and so I'm not sure where this story is going, but I'm definitely sticking around to find out.

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