Thanks to AWA Studios for the review copy!
When I read Grendel, I immediately thought about the dragon baddie in Beowulf. Grendel is a town in Kentucky where this story takes place, but based on the first few pages, I’m not sure my first instinct was entirely off base.
Set in 1971, Grendel opens with a mysterious couple of pages. The story picks up three days later, focusing on Mike and Marnie, two rough criminal type siblings drawn back together by a tragedy. Of the two, Marnie is the more interesting character in this issue. She’s tough and doesn’t seem to be above breaking the law, but she’s got a moral compass. This issue effectively establishes Marnie and Mike’s relationship, while setting up what is sure to be a more action packed second issue.
The art uses a muted color palette and fainter, more impressionistic lines. It can sometimes be hard to tell characters apart. Luckily, Marnie and some of the minor characters have distinct character designs which helps. The action panels are well planned, giving a clear picture of what is happening, complete with written sound effects (“Crash!”) to help complete the scene. It’s a minor point, but the lettering of these sound effects is a highlight, kudos go out to John Workman for his terrific lettering job in the issue.
This issue is billed a #1 of 4, so getting into the series isn’t necessarily a big commitment. With a teased mystery and interesting characters, Grendel, Kentucky has shown me enough to want to read issue 2.
GRENDEL, KENTUCKY #1 is now available.
Check back in a few weeks for my thoughts on the second issue (set for release on October 14th) of the four part series.
Have you read the issue? What were your thoughts? Feel free to chat with me on Twitter or leave a comment below!