Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Ferryman #1

"Butcher's Bill"
Writer: Marc Andreyko
Artist: Jonathan Wayshak
Colourists: Carrie Strahan & Gabe Eltaeb
Letterer: Rob Leigh
Editor: Scott Peterson

Ferryman is a five-issue mini from WildStorm, this time sharing the billing with yet another new imprint: Dark Castle Comics. Dark Castle belongs to movie producer Joel Silver, who for some reason has decided to get into comics. I can only assume that it's a concept farm, but if you already are a movie producer, I'm not sure why you'd bother with the hassle of actually publishing a comic.

Anyway, Gabriel, the titular Ferryman, is a modern day version of Charon. His job is apparently to go out and kill people who sold their souls to Satan for power, and whose time has now expired.

That's actually only covered in the last two pages, but since the rest of the first issue is just an extended chase scene where he hunts down a typical escapee, there's not much else to talk about. It's a classic example of something that would make a strong opening scene of a graphic novel, but doesn't make enough headway to be a good opening issue of a serial.

This isn't an original idea; Reaper is along similar lines. But that's a comedy-drama, and Ferryman is... well, an action-comedy, I guess. It's too simplistic to hold much interest as a piece of writing, which is a bit disappointing coming from Andreyko. Jonathan Wayshak's art is another matter, though. Hovering in Sam Kieth territory, but with a sharper, brittler edge, he's got something, and looks to be worth keeping an eye on.

It's worth flicking through for the art, but there's not enough story to justify buying it. Still, they've tied up the rights for the film, and I suppose that must have been the main aim.

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