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"The Willows" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by Floating World Comics


Based on the Novella by Algernon Blackwood
Written by Nathan Carson
Illustrated by Sam Ford
Lettered by Jason Fischer
2019, 73 Pages


Two women set out for adventure along the Danube River and encounter untold horrors along the way. Just in case you needed another reason to stay indoors, Algernon Blackwood's The Willows has you covered. What starts as a seemingly innocent trip quickly has them questioning reality itself.

Adapting a novella into a comic is not an easy task. Writer Nathan Carson tackles this project, pulling in all the emotion and eerie tones of the book. The trouble comes in that it's just too much. In comics, the art often does the heavy lifting, not the words. You can say quite a lot with a single image. That is not the case with The Willows, which is chock full of specific and often unneeded narration.

Click images to enlarge

It's also frustrating when the text tells us things the images already do. For example, there's a spot where we see a close up of a pocket watch and the next panel says, “Hours had passed.” We know. We just saw the clock. You don't need to tell us that. Letterer Jason Fischer did an admirable job sifting through this hefty narration.

This is unfortunate, as Sam Ford's artwork is trippy as hell and a perfect fit for the unsettling tone of The Willows. Although some of the human forms are a little off and occasionally cartoony, the horror sequences are out of this world. They're full of amazing detail and are rather haunting. They are so very unnatural. If any normal human saw it, their mind would just melt.

Click images to enlarge

The Willows is an eerie, disturbing ride, bogged down by its heavy text. While the story doesn't totally translate, the frightening tone comes through loud and clear.


Story: the willows large Cover
Buy from Amazon US.
Buy from Amazon UK.
Art: threeandahalfstars
Overall: 2.5 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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