This is a group workblog for the Oni Comics series LOCAL.

"Perfect three-minute single. You're going to want this one. Trust me." - Warren Ellis
"Some of the sharpest slices of life the medium has ever seen. Highly recommended." - Brian K. Vaughan
"a rare and enviable thing... painfully easy to enjoy."- Gail Simone
"the coolest short film never shown on the IFC or Sundance Channel." - Sequential Tart
"best of 2005" - The Daily Oklahoman

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

CBR reviews LOCAL #1

Augie over on CBR talks about the advance copy of LOCAL #1 we gave him. Possible spoilers for those who care about such things.

Some snippets:

The first issue incorporates all of that into a plot that will seem semi-familiar to those who've seen cult favorite movie RUN LOLA RUN. It's time for one girl to make one choice that could affect the rest of her life. Actions have consequences, and we get to see what they would be in this issue... Wood and Kelly handle the transitions back and forth very smoothly. You'd think they'd need some extra captions to explain what's going on, but the storytelling segues perfectly without it. You'll see what I mean when the book comes out, but you shouldn't have a problem following it all.

Warren Ellis has already described the book as something akin to a three-minute single from the world of music. He's right. It's a quick read with a strong hook. You'll remember it for some time to come. And it's not a chore to get through. That's a very accurate accounting of the issue. It doesn't get all artsy-fartsy, either. This is very down to earth and straightforward in its narrative, aside from the one plot trick I talked about earlier.

The only failing I think the issue may have is its attempt to force a Real World Location (Portland, Oregon) into the story. Yes, it leads to a nice panel with an accurate representation of a local landmark building. I think, though, that this story could have been set up in a dozen other cities with similar results. The city isn't a character in this book, although it is nice to see a story not set in one of the usual locations that comic book writers tend to go for.

Ryan Kelly is the star of this book, though. Even if the story were complete trash -- and it's far from that -- Kelly's art would be worth paying the cover price for. It has a very inky independent feel to it. There's hints of Paul Pope in there, and even a few bits of Becky Cloonan. The impressive thing to me, though, is just how unrelenting the art is. There are no shortcuts in this book...

LOCAL #1 is a real winner. The story is a quick punch to the gut, with a nice hook and fantastic art from someone who knows how to create shadows and depth on his art using multiple tools. I was a bit hesitant about this series going in, but this issue sold me. It's due out in November, so retailers should still be accepting your pre-orders on it for another week or so. I'd recommend giving at least this first issue a chance.



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