Green Wake is a noir-horror comic that follows Morley Mack as he investigates a grisly murder in a town where no one knows how they get there and no one can leave. This is an unsettling vision of fate and guilt that chills as it entertains. Though dubbed as a horror comic, this isn’t about violence and gore, this is a simmering study of the terrible things people are capable of and the inevitable nature of man. It’s about the terror of guilt and forgiveness. But it also has Rossmo making with some damn intense violence and monsters.
This is the best comic I have read so far this year, it is definitely the strongest debut of 2011, and I want as many people as possible to trust me and buy this comic. I’m not spouting hyperbole, this book is insanely great. I just want more people to be able to discuss it with. I’ve never asked anything of you before but you seriously need to buy this comic. Just one lousy issue, you’ll see I’m right afterwards. Still unsure…here are ten reasons to pick up Green Wake next week when it drops. And I am running this feature now with reason, I want you to have a full week to be convinced. Next Tuesday just wasn't going to give you, the readers, enough time to truly understand that you need this comic in your life.
I love a good noir comic but this uses the concept of noir and takes it to a completely new level. The main character is noir but so is his location. Green Wake is as much a character as Morley is and you distinctly get the feeling nothing here is going to end well, and nothing probably ever has ended well.
If this is a rollercoaster ride then it only goes down, and it just won’t stop.
2 - Torn Lips Off A Face
This comic opens with a murder in the town of Green Wake. The victim had his lips completely ripped off. And Riley Rossmo has no qualms about showing this in his own inimitable style. It’s a horrific moment but also one that’s completely and insanely awesome.
This is how you set the problem in a comic and make it feel visceral. This is how you raise the stakes. This is how you gain my interest. Then you keep me hooked by promising more disturbing imagery.
3 - Erudition On The Page
Some comics feel like they’re for kids. Some comics feel like they’re written to man-children. Then a few comics feel like you could teach them and you’d have more than enough content to fill your curriculum. Green Wake is a smart comic. It isn’t smart because it uses big words or tries to reference literary masters. No, Green Wake is smart in the way it sets up the narrative and delivers the story elements to you. It’s smart because it’s been well thought out. It already reminds me of being in a similar tone of some of the classic Alan Moore run on Swamp Thing. It's that good.
If you want a comic that’s serious and studious and is going to make you think about what happens in it then Green Wake must be in your pull list. We need more smart comics so vote with your wallets.
Creator owned comics are important because the creators really rely on the funds brought in to pay their bills and feed their mouths. Creator owned comics need to be supported, especially good ones. Creator owned comics are the breeding ground for the next generation of amazing creators and if they don’t get the support now then they might disappear into other fields like carpentry, or the public service.
When you support a creator owned book by buying it in the monthly format you make comics, the environment, a better place. Be one of life’s good guys, pick up Green Wake.
5 - Kurtis Wiebe Is The Next Big Thing
You’re hearing it here first. This guy is going places. Remember when you picked up Gillen’s Phonogram, or Fraction’s Casanova, or Aaron’s Scalped? This is one of those moments. Seriously. If Wiebe can write a comic this good then he’s going to get headhunted very soon. He’s got some other pitches in the works and he’s got The Intrepids shipping as well, but this book is so great that he’ll be writing your favourite stories in a few years and you want to be someone who can say you where there when.
Get in on the ground floor. It’s so much nicer, and smug, in here.
6 - Rossmo’s Art
If you’ve ever read Proof or Cowboy Ninja Viking, both from Image, then you know how good Rossmo’s art is. It’s somewhere in the same vein as Ben Templesmith and Chris Ryall and yet something still completely on its own. Rossmo brings his distinct style to Green Wake and yet manages to make it look like he’s doing something new. This comic looks gorgeous but feels like no other story I’ve ever read. This book could almost become its own catch phrase for a story type or tone. It reminds me of back when David Fincher was a hungry young director wanting to break the system in two, this book does a few new things but is still comprehensible.
How often do you get such a marriage of great writing with amazing art? Why wouldn’t you want to support that with your money?
In the press materials, Kurtis Wiebe mentions Green Wake being influenced by Twin Peaks and The Dark Tower. Those are two very interesting choices and they bring plenty to the table but there are also more influences to find in this comic. It’s very much a pulp noir tale, it’s Lovecraft meets Philip K Dick in the most Spartan of both authors. There are shades of Jeunet’s The City of Lost Children as well as hints to underground cinema of Canada and Italy. This comic is informed by many things but it never once feels like a rip off, or even a heavy handed homage. Green Wake is only Green Wake, the rest are just steps to help your mind adjust.
8 - A Chilling Reflection
This comic doesn’t have to work to scare you. Instead, it just unsettles you. Rossmo’s art lures you in as much as it repulses you. The town of Green Wake itself feels comfortable but in a bad way – like a bad habit you can’t break because it’s easier to continue. The mysterious murders are scary but not as much as the prospect of being lost in this town. This is pitched as a horror comic and it nails this tone perfectly. The worst part being, the worst aspects are simply the truths Wiebe puts into the page. The terrible way we see the world, and others in it, is exactly what leads to people ending up in Green Wake. If you've ever been in a relationship then you'll find plenty on offer to sympathise with on these pages.
I'd almost say this book is the perfect break up book, like a song you remember or a smeel, it's about what it draws out in you more than what it actually is. But don't be confused by some of the gore, Green Wake isn’t a slasher book, it’s a horrific document of the mind.
This is a good thing not just because it’s different but because it is tapping a narrative vein that hasn’t been accessed before. This is like nothing else before because nothing has ever tried what this is doing. There are hints here and there but Green Wake assembles something you haven’t seen before and in a way you haven’t thought to want and demand. But you want it, and you need it.
Your soul will not be complete without Green Wake. Feed your soul.
10 - Amazing Quality
A-MAZ-ING-LY GOOD! This first issue is the debut of the year. Green Wake has the potential to be one of the best miniseries of the year and this issue gives you more than enough reasons to believe it can do it. The writing is pitch perfect and the art compliments every story beat. The characters are intriguing, the central mystery is engaging, and the town of the tale is going to ensnare you, as it does everyone, and make you a prisoner.
This is going to be one of the best comics of 2011, without doubt, so get in on the ground floor now. Don’t come see me when the trade hits and say I didn’t give you a heads up. This is history in the making in five monthly instalments.
I have fallen in love, and her name is Green Wake. This horror comic from Kurtis Wiebe and Riley Rossmo is unlike anything I’m reading at the moment, and it’s exactly what I’ve been waiting for since I started reading EC horror comics as a kid. This is a tale to unnerve and delight in just the right magical portions that make for a noir-horror tale you will not forget. Invest $3.50 next week and thank me in any way you want but thank yourself for being smart enough to buy a comic that is so flat out brilliant as this one.