FIRST ISSUE REVIEWS: PART ONE
What Is It?: Welcome To Hoxford #1
Who Wrote It?: Ben Templesmith, known for creating/writing/drawing Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse and doing the art on the 30 Days of Night books.
Who Pencilled It?: Ben Templesmith.
Company: IDW Publishing
REVIEW: First, I'll give a bit of background on what I'm doing here. I picked up a lot of first issues of comic series over at NY Comic Con, and I told most of the creators I'd review them on this site. I chose to start this off with Templesmith's "Welcome to Hoxford" because the TPB just came out this week, so I thought now would be the right time to tell people whether the series is or isn't worth getting into. I met Mr. Templesmith at Comic Con, and he was a very nice fellow, and we already know he's talented from his wonderful stuff on Wormwood. When I questioned him about Hoxford, he told me that the series was a new kind of f***ed up, which piqued my interest even more. The first issue wasn't at his table, but I was able to pick it up at another booth that had a box of IDW comics. And Templesmith is right, it's really f***ed up, and it's really different than his stuff that we've seen before. It's unrelentingly dark, void of the lightness that Wormwood manages to squeeze in.. and it works. The tale is gruesome, but never gratuitous with the gore. It's gross, but what makes it better than series like The Walking Dead is that all of the grossness is done for setting up the plot and the characters, which are all very very interesting. What I've noticed about Templesmith's written/drawn projects like this and Wormwood is that he spends little to no time on exposition in the beginning of the story. He hops in, completely trusting the reader to follow on the ride as he slowly reveals everything, and that is rare in any medium of story-telling in modern times. It's a very solid first issue, and the art is, as always with Templesmith, sickly satisfying.
Verdict: Green. WELCOME TO HOXFORD is worth following.
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Be sure to check back here an hour or so later for a review.