30 Days of Night #1 Review

30 Days of Night #1
IDW Publishing

Written by: Steve Niles
Art by: Piotr Kowalski

There are some weird things happening in the Alaskan township of Barrow. I do not mean the month of darkness that is coming, the citizens are used to that. I am talking about the strangers looking for work, the campsite in the snow, and the… wait, is that?! It is! I had to read through this comic twice to make sure, but it certainly is who I thought it was, um, is. Now I am a little confused on if I am reading a comic book about a murderer on the loose, or is there is something more supernatural in the woods.

If you enjoy a good mystery, then head over to your LCBS and pick up this book. Steven Niles does an amazing re-imagining of this series. While it does contain some of the tropes known in the horror genre, they are used well. The biggest example of this is “stranger enters tow; there is a murder.” I do not believe that this guy is going to be our killer, I suspect something bigger out there. In fact, I wager that this burly, bearded man will end up being a hero of sorts. I would like to claim that I am not basing this on a bearded bias, having facial hair myself, but it probably is.

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The art in the book is beautiful and terrifying at the same time. It reminds me of the small towns I used to fantasize about living in when I was a kid. In particular, Barrow could just as easily be Cecily, Alaska from the 1990s show, Northern Exposure. The major difference being in Cecily you may have to deal with Joel’s incessant complaining, but at least you will live. After reading this issue, I will be actively hunting out more of Piotr Kowalski’s work. Maybe he can illustrate a horror version of Northern Exposure… just a thought.

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