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"Clodagh #1" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by Blue Fox Publishing

article-cover

Written by Simon Birks
Illustrated by Willi Roberts
Lettered by Rob Jones
2021, 22 Pages

Review:

When a quaint village in the countryside is plagued by an evil witch hacking off heads, kidnapping children, and brainwashing the locals, Clodagh is the only one to stand up and fight. A warrior in her own right, she is seen as an outsider by the villagers, so you may wonder why she would defend these people to begin with. This gets personal when the witch takes her daughter. Her husband, Fillin heads out to save the kid alone, leaving Clodagh back in the village.

The witch is by far the standout in Clodagh #1. Artist Willi Roberts has created an absolutely disgusting creature here. Its hair is thin and wispy, with maybe a dozen strands sitting atop a decrepit head. Its skin is filthy and yellow. The hands end in claws, just as deadly as the sharp teeth in its mouth. It's gross. It's also a great way to open the book.

Letterer Rob Jones uses a more aggressive-looking font for the witch's speech, shown in yellowish word balloons that match the monster's skin. The balloons are encircled by a thick, rough line for added emphasis too.

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After a dynamite opening, Clodagh #1 veers into village life. It creates an ominous feeling, as we're wondering when the two will intersect. Just when this day-in-the-life segment starts to drag, writer Simon Birks takes a hard turn, reminding us of the dangers at play. The tension does not let up from that point on. Things only get scarier and bloodier.

Roberts signifies this change in tone with a shift in the color palette. When the witch shows up, there's a yellow tinge to everything, as if a sulfurous cloud came over the area. Similarly, the issue works like the movement of the sun, with it starting out with a bright, clear day and ending in darkness. It works well to set up the eerie mood of the series.

There are some aspects of Clodagh that aren't abundantly clear in this first issue. If it wasn't spelled out in the description of the book, I would have assumed the young girl was Clodagh's daughter and Fillin was their father. He looks older, but that could just be the beard. She looks much younger. Similarly, her warrior background doesn't come through yet, although her design by Roberts implies as such. She is thin and muscular, fitting for this time period.

This will undoubtedly be explored and cleared up in the remaining chapters along with some other questions that have popped up. As it stands, Clodagh #1 is a solid opening salvo for this dark fantasy / horror series.

Grades:

Story: threeandahalfstars Cover
Art: fourstars
Overall: 3.5 Star Rating

About The Author
James Ferguson
Lord of the Funny Books
James has a 2nd grade reading level and, as a result, only reads books with pictures. Horror is his 5th favorite genre right after romantic comedy and just before silent films. No one knows why he's here, but he won't leave.
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