The Wax Conspiracy

Hinterkind Volume 1: The Waking World

Mutilation is rife in the world of Hinterkind and the classic fallout of humans surviving in a post-apocalyptic world sees a bunch of myth and legends creep in for an unsettling showdown. What promise remains though?

The creatures, the monsters, the utter ruins of New York covered deep in forests and greens. These are no problem for Francesco Trifogli to render. It's a mash of grit for a stark leftover universe that fits neat under the scratchy artwork. The rawness meshes well with the surrounding landscape and hurries along a need to stay on top of basic survival.

It's when the people start talking to each other that their faces melt, running around the jawline and slipping in terms of consistency. Thankfully that's only on the opening few before they pick up and remain same-faced for the rest of the volume.

At first the dialogue is terse, perfunctory and apt for the new world order. Then it drops a load of exposition, scattered in captions ripped from "The First Book of Monday" and we're into florid speeches, especially when the queen makes her appearances.

Ian Edginton writes neat and fun banter scenes between the goblins and other mutants. Nice nuggets in the scheme of things. They balance out against the grandstanding a few others arm their teeth with. There is a definite sense of this fantasy world's remnants and survivors existing in a cruel, harsh and unforgiving place. The pace, after the quiet introduction, carries on with no real time to pause or appreciate how things are and adds to the unexpected nature of it all.

But there is something about the colours by Cris Peter that's off-putting. And it has to do with shadows. Or at least parts of shadows.

Caught in a makeshift sunroof
Marker type shading gives the sense there are horizontal blinds in the jungle

Figures and objects with cast shadows look rough. The shade lines like blinds create a feel of a pulp noir where a flat-foot private detective with a face like a bucket watches the street below as a dame with gams up to heaven smokes a cigarette and talks about her no-good husband. Not a good match.

Aside from maybe wanting to see how one of the characters came to be, that's about it for this Vertigo series.

The publisher, DC Comics, provided a review copy.

Ethan Switch

Reviewed on Sunday, 18 May 2014

The Wax Conspiracy




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