Review: Go West #1
Written by: Garrett Gunn
Art: Saint Yak
Colours: Sean Forney
Publisher: Alterna Comics
Dare I say it, but Alterna smash another one out of the park with the release of their new short series Go West. Sorry if I’m sounding like a stuck record but Alterna are fast becoming my favourite publisher with a smart catalogue of quick fire short-runs that are genre crunching, easy access winners. After releases such as Cody Sousa’s modern yet nostalgic horror Croak ( Review: Croak #3) and the genre splicing sci-fi horror Trespasser ( Chico Comics Page Review: Trespasser #4 ) it’s easy to see why so many readers are keen to pick up these low priced gems. So, how does Go West compare to the other titles in their ever growing range?
A bold genre identity is paramount to to Go West as it daws on themes previously found in classic and modern western titles. We meet our protagonist, a dark, brooding mystery man who clearly has one thing on his mind – revenge. As he digs two graves, we soon understand the depths of his fury and the opening sequences reflect the why’s and how’s of the predicament we find him in. It’s tense. It’s tense and slowly brewing up to the point when he will, no doubt, blow. When he does, it’s truly a sight to behold and the climax will undoubtedly leave you grinning like a Cheshire cat. The writing throughout is tempered and restrained. This only adds to the tension and helps create the impression of a man who is himself winding himself up to be released like a berserker. This also plays into the western tropes of a cold, calculated loner travelling the high plains.
However good the writing and storytelling may be here, I think the biggest talking point will be the art. Distressed panels provide the backdrop for a weathered age. The wind worn vista of the apocalyptic West is presented in glorious decay with battered road signs guiding battered people to god knows where. The use of sand browns, greys and dark shading combine to leave a dejected landscape and the reader is at once appalled and intrigued by the despair our protagonist faces. The fine pencil work also leaves, ironically, a clean and crisp feel to the panels and this allows the foreground to be much more prominent against a fatter lined and sometimes out of focus background. This also marries well with the choices of perspectives.
As said before, the book does so well at matching dialogue and perspectives to the themes within this genre splicing book. Yes, the tale is a western but the dystopian threads are dangled before our eyes and will no doubt be used to lift the book into other directions before long. The mood is perfect for anyone who is looking for a brooding action with a heavy slice of soul-tearing and mental anguish going on. Get it while it’s hot!
Skully’s Corner: Why buy this book? Atmospheric art leaving a unique look to the book, the ultimate in brooding storytelling, and lots and lots of lovely, gooey blood…buy it.
Thank you for reading our review of Go West #1. We here at the Chico Comics Page appreciate your viewership. We invite you to check back with us soon as we post often. Or, you can follow us on Facebook (The Chico Comics Page), Google+ (The Chico Comics Page) and Twitter (@ChicoComicsPage) for regular updates on all of our posts.
Review written by Arun Sharma.
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