Without the fuel of fear, monsters cannot thrive and are put down as humans no longer fear the freakish beasts. Claude is what remains of his species; a washed-out Cthulhu who must live his life as a human citizen and try to fit into a prejudice world. A monster, a cop, a victim and an accused criminal – Claude is all of this rolled into one. He is set up by crime boss Victor, who wants to put fear back into the community once more so that the realm of monsters may rise again. It seems like a lot is against Claude, but it also seems he is the only one to put a stop to this uncertainty. Thus the monster becomes the hero.
It mixes a dark and dreary backdrop with splashes of vibrancy, keeping the book animated and upbeat. The art has this lovely chalkiness that adds to the gritty noir style, as does the additional ink splatters, which are very typical in a horror comic. Creator Paul Johnson is obviously a big pop culture buff, with all his reference to cult films and characters easy to see. Our hero is named after Jean-Claude Van Damme and his cat is called McClane. Enough said. The list of movie references goes on throughout the book so any film buff reading this will have fun picking them out.
ONCE MONSTER: TO FEAR AGAIN PART 1 / WRITER & ARTIST: PAUL JOHNSON / PUBLISHER: BEAT THE DEMON COMIX / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW