Comic Review: VerityFair #4 / Writer: Terry Wiley / Art: Terry Wiley / Publisher: IDCM Comics / Release Date: Out Now
“Poor ol’ Loose. She had to try everything in the sweetie shop, didn’t she?” VerityFair #4 marks another triumphant release from one of the UK’s most consistently brilliant independent comic creators, combining natural dialogue and a depth of sincerity rarely seen in the medium with a wit so unmistakably British that I’m left wondering again why it’s creator isn’t a bigger player on the international stage.
Creator Terry Wiley worried that this funeral issue might be a little too dark and honest for his readers’ tastes, proving conclusively that the man is a terrible judge of his own talents. The strength of VerityFair has always been Wiley’s scrutiny of everyday life and attention to the dreary minutia that our relationships are built upon. Without revealing too much about the plot, this issue Verity touches upon themes of mental health, addiction and mortality, never preaching or talking down to the readers. The pages are dense with conversations, easily Terry Wiley’s greatest strength, and through the characters’ interactions the plot develops in a manner that reminded me of nothing so much as primetime British television.
The sad truth about VerityFair is that it deserves an audience much wider than comic-book readers open-minded enough to look outside of superheroes and genre fiction. VerityFair is a comic about ordinary people, a comic about real people living believable lives, and as such it’s a comic for everybody. Verity herself is a female lead in a medium dominated by male characters and just as importantly she’s starting to get a little long in the tooth, far from glamorous and definitely not idealised. The world needs more protagonists like Verity Fair and you probably need a comic this witty and well-realised in your life. Do yourself a favour and buy a copy of VerityFair #4, but when you’re finished reading pass it on to somebody in your life that watches a lot of television but has never read a comic before. Chances are they’ll thank you for it.