July 2, 2012

IDW Reviews: The Crow #1

The Crow #1
Publisher: IDW
Writer: John Shirley
Artist: Kevin Colden
Cover: Kyle Hotz

There will be many who immediately compare this to the original Crow tale that first introduced us to Eric Draven and Shelly. That would be an unfair comparison in my opinion, since that story was new and personal. The first Crow movie also became a cult classic, which helped with the popularity of the comic. We also hadn’t been assaulted by countless sub par movie sequels that never lived up to the original.

This story focuses on Jamie Osterberg and Haruko Tatsumi. A couple living in Tokyo who don’t know that their lives are about to take a very dark turn. The company Haruko works for is involved in some very dangerous practices, and she is in line to be the next victim. Now, Shirley lays a pretty solid foundation for this issue, and the couple is one that you would probably root for and identify with. Their dialog and banter between each other was great, and moments like their sharing of each other’s languages was a great way to show this. However, the pacing of the story only allows for the slightest connection to the characters. Everything seems to happen in a rushed fashion, and things only slow down when focusing on the disappearance of a student. What also seemed a bit rushed was Jamie’s transformation, which was basically just a few panels.

As far as the artwork goes, Colden does a fine job illustrating the story. The transition to certain panels and the entire layout helped with the visual flow of the story. Scattering crows throughout certain parts also gave a nice allusion as to what would happen later in the story. Jamie’s death scene was also pretty impressive, as he fell to his end and disappeared. The only area that seemed to suffer at times was that the faces were inconsistent, which caused a bit of confusion.

With this only being the first issue, there’s a willingness to continue on to see if the issues with the story are corrected as we see Jamie take his vengeance. There are several things done very right, as this story feels nothing like the original and stands on its own merit. This in itself is a plus, since the last thing anyone would want is a rehash of the same old story, regardless of how great it is.

Infinite Speech