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Stray Dogs 2 Main

"Stray Dogs #2" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by Image Comics

article-cover

Written by Tony Fleecs
Illustrated by Trish Forstner
Colored by Brad Simpson
Layouts by Tone Rodriguez
Flats by Lauren Perry
2021, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on March 24th, 2021

Review:

Sophie was having trouble getting settled into her new home, but the other dogs were very welcoming. The place seems nice enough and the Master is caring. When she gets a whiff of an old scarf, she gets flashes of memory showing the Master killing her former owner. She just has to put the pieces together to make sense of it. Maybe the answers are in the mysterious room that's off limits to the dogs...

Stray Dogs may look like a Disney-esque comic, but it's one of the tensest books on the stands today. Sophie and Rusty go looking for answers in the Forbidden Room just as the Master comes back home. I was reading these pages with clenched teeth as I was so concerned for their safety. If this guy is really a murderer, there's no telling what he could do to these dogs. Writer Tony Fleecs has paced this incredibly well.

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This is very much told from the perspective of the dogs. As such, artist Trish Forstner is careful to never show the Master's face. We get glimpses here and there, like a shot of him through a closet door or peering through the shadows, but never full on. This adds to the eerie nature of the guy.

Contrast this with the dogs, who are this cartoony lot of characters, each with a personality of their own. They're bright and lively, which makes the worry on Sophie's face stand out so much. That tone starts to shift as Rusty gets punished for going into the Forbidden Room. It takes on a more serious mood as the dogs get a reality check of sorts.

Colorist Brad Simpson marks this shift in tone, particularly with Rusty's punishment. We don't know what awaits the shack in the backyard, but we know it's not good based on the creepy red light that emanates from it. It's like he's sent into the fiery pits of Hell itself. This stands out as the rest of the palette for Stray Dogs #2 is relatively warm and welcoming.

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The basic vibe of Stray Dogs from what I can tell after two issues is that this guy is killing women he finds at dog parks and then keeps their pets. He then uses them to find more victims, keeping this cycle going. The dogs are starting to put this together though so I'm curious if they'll enact their own form of justice.

Stray Dogs moves past the hook of its cartoonish artwork, delivering an incredibly tense murder mystery. It's funny that the characters aren't even human, yet we can relate to them just as much if not more than other stories out there. This book will pull you in completely.

Grades:

Story: fourstars Cover
Buy from Amazon US.
Cover
Buy from Amazon UK.
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Art: fourstars
Overall: 4 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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