Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Gene Colan Reviews SNAKED

The following review will appear this week in The Comic Buyer's Guide. It was written by Gene Colan. Yes--that Gene Colan.

SNAKED #1 review
It’s funny how the mind works. I judge everything by film. It’s the way I draw and the way I think. Sometimes there’s something more realistic about film than real life, as strange as that might sound, especially when it’s done right. Perhaps it’s because I was traumatized in 1931 when I saw “Frankenstein.” I was five. My father took me to see it in the Bronx. I remember the theater up on a big hill. I was never the same after that.

It was my love of film that first drew me into Clifford Meth’s stories. I’d been hired to illustrate “Deprogramming Esther,” an alarming tale about the death of a Hassidic child, as well as “A Day in the Death of Martin Peel,” which examined the psychological events leading to a man’s suicide. These stories had one thing in common: Reading them was like seeing a film. Cliff painted with words the way I painted with pictures. Of course, that made them a pleasure to illustrate.

Years later, I wrote, “What separates Clifford Meth from most writers is his courage to take on sensitive issues. I’d read anything he’s ever written.” Oh boy—I should be more careful with my promises! Because when I saw a preview of Cliff’s latest piece, Snaked #1 from IDW Publishing, I’ll admit I was shocked. Sexual violence is at the top of my list for things I don’t want to see—it was something we never did in comics when I was getting started in the business. But times have changed and subjects that were taboo a generation ago are acceptable today.

Snaked is strong writing, very strong. But I’ve come to always expect that from Cliff. A decade ago, I illustrated a series of his stories for the book Perverts, Pedophiles & Other Theologians—powerful stories, all, but not quite as powerful as Snaked. I had to look away several times. I really did! Even when Cliff is teasing, using that acid wit of his, the story is dead serious.

Snaked is a brutal, politically relevant and astute comic that will leave you more than a little shaken up. And if that’s not horror, what is? --Gene Colan

SNAKED from IDW Publishing -- Available this Friday (Dec. 28) at a comics shop near you!

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