Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Memorial #2

Comics are somewhat imitative by nature, so it's never a surprise when a comic shows up that tries to tap into a past success.

This new series Memorial, for example, seems to be trying very hard to be the new Sandman (or perhaps the new Fables).

And that's ok, because it's always good to aim high.

I should add that the book is not a direct swipe at all, although it hits some similar notes.

The story by Chris Roberson follows an amnesia victim named Em. She works in a bookstore, and while on her lunch break she discovers a magical store loaded with books, toys and knick-knacks.

But she also finds herself in great danger as living statues come after her. She steps through the door of the shop and finds herself at the ocean. Oh, and she discovers a cat who talks.

Em is likeable enough (though we don't know much about her, she's obviously plucky) and the mystery unfolding is entertaining. The story moves things along briskly (being chased by strange, vicious creatures helps keep things crackling).

The art is by Rich Ellis, and I like it - it suits the story well. Sometimes dark and moody, sometimes rumpled and real-worldish (if that's a word). He does seem to struggle with the look of the cat in a couple of places, but that's a minor dig.

There's plenty of room in the world of comics for another thoughtful and intelligent fantasy comic, and that's the niche for Memorial.

It should do well as long as it resists the urge to get too cute with its own premise (as it almost does with the names of the queens of the three mystic realms - a little too much Gaiman lifting going on there).

But if you like that sort of thing (as everyone should), then this is well worth checking out.

Grade: B+


1 comment:

Shane Giroux said...

"And that's ok, because it's always good to aim high."

Amen. I'd say the tone is more reminiscent of Fables than Sandman, and even at that it feels different enough to enjoy and not cry "ripoff", which is a much overused cry.