Death Bed #1

Written by Joshua Williamson.
Line art by Riley Rossmo.
Colour art by Ivan Plascencia.
Letters by Deron Bennett.
Logo design by Tim Daniel.

As I mentioned in my last post, I’m planning to update this blog more frequently. It’ll be a mix of some of my drawings and writing. The writing will primarily be about comics that I’m reading that wouldn’t be a good fit for Irish Comic News.

So to kick off this latest reboot of the blog is issue one of the Death Bed mini-series published under the Vertigo banner.

I had seen the cover art (which is wonderful to look at) and the first three pages teased via social media, and that’s all it took for me to put it on the pull list. I mean how could I not be intrigued by a comic feature a infant held aloft while the father proclaims,  “You will be the greatest man to ever live…. or die trying”?

That infant is Antonio Luna who grows up to become one for the worlds greatest adventurers before he disappeared from the public eye. In quite a contrast to that introduction, the meets Valentine Richards as she is sitting on the crapper taking a pitch from her editor. And what’s the pitch? Why to ghostwrite Lunas memoir.

As you can imagine, the comic is having a lot of fun with the adventurer archetype. Of course he has the large country mansion with the required staff. I did like how the artists gives the back story of Lunas life through grandiose paintings as a member of the staff guides Valentine to where a dying Luna awaits her. There’s also the shadowy figures that are ever present in the background of the scenes within the mansion which raises some questions in the early part of the comic.

I did like the splash page where things really kick off. It’s a fun page to discover on a page turn that totally changes the energy levels of the comic. I did have a suspicion of how the story might play out, which is nowhere as much fun as what the team came up with.

The art keeps things interesting even though the comic is pretty much set all in the mansion. Good use of the camera angles switch as needed to give the reader a sense of the scale of the mansion to close-ups that put the reader right in the middle of some of the quieter conservation scenes. And there’s the change in energy of the comic on *that* page turn. It’s almost like getting a shot of adrenaline from the comic.

The lettering is well done, which it needed to be as there are plenty of dialogue balloons and captions through out the comic. As the action doesn’t kick off until late in the first issue, there isn’t a huge amount of sound effects but it’s something for me to look forward to in the following issues. I’m on a bit of a sound effects kick lately when it comes to lettering. I like seeing the variation letterers have to sound effects.

Death Bed promises some over-the-top violent adventuring with a healthy does of humour thrown in. Plus how could I not want to find out how things play out for a man that was told from birth, “you will be the greatest man to ever live…. or die trying”? It’ll be an adventure if nothing else!

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