Review by “Troynos”
This is a private eye tale, and yet it’s not. It’s a demon hunter tale all wrapped up in noir.
The world is different from ours, the timeframe this takes place is unknown, but it has a mix of the past and the future. There are computers, and some kind of internet, but it’s the old fashioned picture tube kind of technology. It creates an interesting and moody world.
It opens with the girlfriend of the recently deceased calling in Private Eye named Ryder. In this world a PI has some of the rights and abilities of the police and the lawyers. Once he agreed to be retained, he has the same rights to the crime scene as the police do. The crime scene is pretty intense.
The first page shows the girlfriend calling Ryder, with an ominous “rrrr” sound playing throughout. And once you get to the double page spread and see what is making the noise and how the man was killed, you start to realize this is not a typical noir tale.
But it has the look and feel, and style, of a private eye tale. Even when the more fantastical elements start coming into the story, it still retains the noir feel.
Hine’s script is good for the tone and feel of the story. All the bullet points are hit. There’s the mysterious femme fatale who is more then she seems, and more dangerous then she seems. There’s the old money family that is involved. This family just happens to have a nephew that is a daemon. It doesn’t take long to get the idea that this is not the world we know.
Little clues laid along the way with Ryder, leads up to the big reveal. Once the reveal is made, the little things along the way start to make more sense. Why did the cop have an uneasy feeling around him? Why does Ryder react the way he does? What at first seems a little odd makes sense once the full picture is shown.
The art is brighter then would have figured for this tale. It doesn’t have as much of a noir feel. It’s not dark or gritty. But it still works. It gives the book a lighter atmosphere that doesn’t directly match the darker feel of the script. But it doesn’t work in conflict. Together the art and script create a nice feel for this book.
Nichols’ got a nice style to his work. He’s got a decent grasp of storytelling, his pages laid out logically and with a good flow. The backgrounds are nicely detailed, especially his work on Ryder’s computer station. The establishing shot of the city, with Ryder’s shadow against the buildings, is very nice, showing us something familiar but not. His more gruesome scenes have the requisite amount of blood and guts, but not more than is necessary. He doesn’t go for the gross out, providing just enough to convey the horrible nature of the crime scene, and the actions Monk has to take, but not making it the focal point.
This is another book done in Radical’s coloring style, which seems to be a muted painted look, which I am coming to really enjoy.
Ryder On The Storm #1 receives:
4 out of 5
A good book that takes the daemonic and makes it work in a noirish environment.
Click the image below to go to this article.