Revival #2 (September – 2012 – Image)

Revival #2

The second of Tim Selley and Mike Norton’s rural noir picks up right where issue one left off.  Dr. Ramin of the R.C.A.T. team is doing the post-mortem on Arlene Dittman the old lady who Martha had killed in the previous issue.  But to the surprise of the coroner and Dr. Ramin, Mrs. Dittman still isn’t dead yet.  There is something more to the Revivers than just your simple zombie outbreak.

Meanwhile Dana Cypress has been reprimanded by her father, and kicked off of the R.C.A.T. team because her sister Martha was on the crime scene with her.  What her father doesn’t know is that Martha is one of the Revivers too.  That secret weighs heavy.  The sisters both have their own ways of dealing with the secret though.  Dana heads to a bar and hooks up with a guy, Martha heads to the bar, and tests the limits of her new abilities and picks a fight.

Enter Mr. Abel (the only name that he has been called by so far though), a demonologist and exorcist who is having a boom in business.  His claim to the parents of a possessed girl that the revival of the dead brought a lot of other darkness along with it.  So as an exorcist he also knows how to spot a fake, and the woman that is trapped in a room with him has no idea that he is about to call her out on her bullshit.

This comic is dark.  The characters are flawed and human, but engaging.  But this title is serious business.  It pulls no punches and just doesn’t let up on its relentless nature.  I am really enjoying this title and can’t wait to read on.  Mr. Abel can only be a great character and the conflict brewing within the Cypress family can only get really messy.  It is starting to feel less like a noir and more like a gothic.

Next Time:  Hellboy: In Hell #2

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Revival #1 (December – 2012 – Image)

Revival #1

I went into Revival blind.  The only thing that I knew about the comic was that it is “A Rural Noir,” and that the covers are amazing.  So when I saw the “Image Firsts” of Revival #1 for a buck, and realized that my local comic book shop had most of the back issues of the title, I decided that it was worth a shot.  Boy am I glad that I took a chance on the title, because as far as first issues go, this one is amazing.

The world that Revival is set in is an amazing idea.  In a small town of Wausau, Wisconsin something particularly strange has happened.  The dead have come back to life.  But these revivers as the locals call them, aren’t what you would expect.  They aren’t mindless zombies lusting after brains, they are aware of who they are.  They have memories and families and they are a problem big enough in the town that the police have set up a special task force to figure out what is going on.  A task force that Dana Cypress is to be a part of, just as her father the sheriff of the city asked her to be.  The tension between Officer Dana and her father is palpable, and gets even more intense with the introduction of Dana’s sister Martha into the mix.

The basic premise of family tension, laid over the mystery of what is going on with the revivers is a perfect set up for the first cast that Dana is sent on as part of the R.C.A.T. (Revitalized Citizen Arbitration Team).  With her sister Martha in tow she heads out to a local farm to deal with a problem that has arisen with one of the revivers.  The situation gets beyond messy.  Frankly the reveal in this is so good (and two fold), that I don’t want to spoil it, but I will let you know that the revivers are something very strange in that their bodies heal, and fast.

Tim Seely has a genius tale on his hands just in this first issue, and I’m beyond excited to not only see where it goes, but to catch up with the title.  The mystery of how and why the revivers exist feels like it is going to be a great exploration.  While the added level of rocky family dynamics is something that I love.  Add to that Mike Norton’s intense and vivid style and you have what is shaping up to be a seriously solid title.

This is the first Image book I have picked up since the mid-nintey’s and it makes me want to hunt down some of the old titles that I used to love (like Deathblow), and it makes me want to look into their line up to see if there are other horror gems lurking in there.  More importantly it makes me want to sit down and read the rest of the issues of Revival that are already out (and I have a few of them hanging out already).  I’m really glad I saw this “Image First” printing of Revival, this is going to be good!  Best buck I’ve spent in a while.

Next Time:  Darkhold #2