Monday, September 28, 2015

Joe Frankenstein - Graham Nolan and Chuck Dixon

Joe Pratt is a pretty hapless case: 17 years old, living in a foster home because his parents were killed in an airplane crash, delivering pizza at night and struggling through school in the day. That all changes one snowy night in Buffalo when he makes a delivery to a house full of beautiful women who turn out to be vampires wanting to feed on him. Before that can happen, a giant but somehow urbane monster crashes in, dispatches the vampires, and tells a stunned Joe that his real name is Joe Frankenstein. The monster, of course, is the legendary Frankenstein's monster, who has spend centuries protecting the descendants of Victor Frankenstein.

This all happens quickly in the beginning of a very fast-paced tale originally published as a four-part mini-series. This collection adds a new ten-page prologue that establishes the history behind the on-going conflict in which Joe finds himself. The back cover calls it "an action-horror-adventure tale", and it's all of that and more, as there's plenty of dark humor (including a Sesame Street joke that you'll miss if you blink) and a sort of globe-trotting, international intrigue vibe. The monster, you see, is a tycoon (easy to make money when you have all the time in the world, he explains) who has all sort of high-tech weaponry and gadgets. He needs that because he's engaged in a long, bitter war with his renegade "bride", who now commands a vast supernatural criminal empire.

JOE FRANKENSTEIN was created by Graham Nolan, who provides the art and co-wrote the script, and Chuck Dixon, the other scripter on the project. It's great, over-the-top fun from start to finish, never taking itself too seriously as it races along at a breakneck pace. It's clearly only the first chapter in a much bigger story, and I hope the sequel(s) come along soon. If you're a comics and/or horror fan, I give it a high recommendation.

No comments: