The fourth ‘Dead By Dawn’ collection has just arrived, missing Halloween by a week or so but it’s not a deal breaker, as good horror comic is welcome any time at my house. SO is it a good horror comic? Read on and find out!
The first thing you notice is the quality, as this is a seriously glossy and well put together book, with forty eight square bound pages full of excellent, well coloured art. Andrew Richmond, who did such a fine job designing ‘Blazer’, is always a good man to have on your design team, and ‘Dead By Dawn’ will stand out in any collection.
The second thing you notice is the wealth of talent involved, justifying the high Kickstarter total the campaign had. Patrick Goddard, Dan Abnett, David Hine, Steve Pugh… these and more make for a tempting purchase, along with some bright stars of the UK inside scene, such as that Andrew Richmond bloke again, David Hitchcock, Dave Bedford and Chris Askham.
Anthologies are rarely perfect for any single reader, and different people will like different things. Myself, I’m happy if three quarters of a book like this hits home with me, and ‘Dead By Dawn’ passes that test. With horror, I also want some dark stuff indeed, and whilst it doesn’t have to be graphic a good, tight script with a skin crawling element is always very welcome. The good news is that there’s a fair few stories here that meet the brief. My personal favourite is ‘Bird Brain’ by David Hine, with very quirky and effective art from Mark Stafford. Another is ‘The Laughter Of King John’, a bit less of a horror tale than a dark morality tale, beautifully illustrated by Patrick Goddard (and coloured by that Richmond bloke) with a script by Banjamin Dickson.
There are a few that just don’t grab me here, mainly because they’re quite bog standard tales that are simply okay rather then special, but the impressive stuff is definitely in the ascendancy throughout. If you like a bit of horror then this is certainly worth checking out . As solid as I could have expected, and one I’m glad I backed.