Created by Dan Abnett & I.N.J. Culbard
Written by Dan Abnett
Illustrated and Lettered by I.N.J. Culbard
Published by BOOM! Studios
Release Date: 9/10/2014
Out this week from BOOM! Studios comes WILD’S END, a fascinating and imaginative new tale from Dan Abnett, who is perhaps best known for his 2008 run on the Guardians of the Galaxy comic, a storyline that served as the films inspiration. Abnett is collaborating with co-creator I.N.J. Culbard (Brass Sun) for this science fiction adventure. Our story is set in 1930’s England, near the rural communities of Lower Crowchurch, Peak Minster, and Dorcaster, where the residents are unknowingly about to become victims of an alien invasion.
It is immediately apparent why the publisher (in this solicit) makes the comparison to Mouse Guard, as Culbard’s illustrations include an intriguing cast of character represented by a wide range of animals. We meet Fawkes (a fox) and Bodie (an otter) as they are taking a midnight stroll through Hightop Woods. Fawkes has a reputation for being the town misfit and drunk, and does not seem to be widely respected or taken seriously. He and Bodie witness what they believe is a falling star, and set out to investigate.
Meanwhile, back at Lower Crowchurch, we meet Gilbert Arrant (a rabbit and local solicitor), Peter Minks (a mole and journalist), and Clive Slipaway (a dog and former Naval officer). Arrant and Mink swing by Slipaway’s home to persuade him to attend an election for the communities’ upcoming fete. It is at this event, at the King’s Arms, where Fawkes returns to inform this gathering of local town folk of what he and Bodie had witnessed and Bodie’s fate. With the help of Slipaway, they are able to force Fawkes out, but after discussing the matter, Arrant, Minks, and Slipaway set out after him. As they journey out, they witness a burning near Shortmile End that sends them in a different direction.
Abnett and Culbard have introduced us to a majestically written and beautifully illustrated first issue with WILD’S END #1. The character development and story building that Culbard covers is fast and effective, as I was quickly enthralled with the plot and the cast. Clive Slipaway has a mysterious aura about him that just demands attention and easily makes him one of my newest favorite characters in comics today. Arrant with his curiosity and Fawkes and his rebellious nature are just as compelling with their own strong and unique personalities. The artwork here as mentioned earlier, is reminiscent of Petersen’s Mouse Guard, perhaps not quite as detailed, but impressive none the less. A fantastic read and highly recommended first issue from this creative duo.
REVIEW: WILD’S END #1
Peter Rodriguez (Geek Sushi)