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"Our Final Halloween #2" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

our final halloween 00

Written by Mike Garley
Illustrated by Michael Lee-Graham
Lettered by Mike Stock
Cover art by Jess Taylor
2019, 28 Pages


After a terrifying night in an abandoned house that left one of their friends dead, David, Kayla, Tark, and Alexis try to move on. With what they've seen, that's no easy task. They can't just forget the monsters they only narrowly escaped. Something pulls them back to that house and it turns out, they're not alone with this encounter.

If I had to describe Our Final Halloween in one word, it would be “haunting.” After establishing untold horrors in its first issue, it expands the mythos in this chapter with an unmistakable feeling of dread. Even if you didn't read the previous issue, you can tell from the very first page that these kids are doomed. It could be that they're all wandering home, covered in blood.

This becomes a defining aspect of Our Final Halloween. What happens to the survivors in horror movies after the terror ends? Do they just go back home and wash off all the blood and guts? Do they go back to work the next day? These kids struggle with the trauma they've been through with an additional level of difficulty because their friend's death was covered up. Someone is trying to hide the truth about what really happened out there.

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Artist Michael Lee-Graham creates that haunting tone perfectly. Our Final Halloween has an exploitation film look to it with some creepy color choices. The blood isn't a deep red, rather a lighter shade of pink, as if the page is washed out. It's almost like a memory or a faded photograph, which is fitting, as this takes place in the '80s.

Lee-Graham cleverly shows the passage of time with a countdown to Halloween hidden in some panels. They always take a different form and work with the overall images, so it's like the town is obsessed with the holiday, even when it's over 350 days away.

When the kids eventually return to the house, things get a little nuts. The panel layout for the book changes up too, with the traditional right-angled look disrupted to throw the images into odd angles. It adds to the chaos of the scene when they're attacked.

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This is just the beginning of the unsettling nature of Our Final Halloween. It's one thing to hint at another event in that spooky house, but it's quite another to show it the way the creators do here. It's a trippy experience that is very cinematic in nature. The colors are a real stand out, driving home the idea that you are seeing something unnatural and horrifying. Letterer Mike Stock adds to this tension with some bolded word balloons, showing the fear in the characters' voice as they scream for help.

Our Final Halloween takes a terrifying horror movie and extends it past the climax. Where do the characters go next? And what do they do when the monsters are not done with them? Writer Mike Garley is building towards something much bigger here, playing with tropes of the genre in new and interesting ways. Judging from this issue, this story is full of possibilities, each more frightening than the last.

Writer Mike Garley is currently running a Kickstarter campaign to fund the release of Our Final Halloween #2.


Story: fourstars Cover
Art: fivestars
Overall: 4.5 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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