COMIC REVIEW: RE-ANIMATOR #1 / AUTHOR: KEITH DAVIDSEN / ARTWORK: RANDY VALIENTE / PUBLISHER: DYNAMITE ENTERTAINMENT / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW
Writer Keith Davidson has pitched a Dr Herbert West that has been through the metaphysical wringer and come out smiling the other side. Set in New Orleans, issue one of Re-Animator sees the good doctor turned drug dealer to supplement his one man science crusade. When he saves plucky doctor Susan Greene from drug peddlers she’s been supplying with medical supplies, he recruits her into his cause. The set-up might conjure up blackly comic images that the franchise is famous for, but it’s a very tenuous addition.
The plot is a fairly straightforward affair, following the experiments and scientific quirks of the barmy doctor, before Susan discovers that Herbert has been watching her for a while. First issue problems aside, it never goes beyond a run of the mill horror comic which, in a pretty saturated market, doesn’t grant it any favours.
Randy Valiente’s art is fairly unremarkable, pretty yes, but without any of the flair or style that gives so many of his contemporaries their edge. Issue one presents a superficial romp around some of H.P. Lovecraft’s more famous works, and it’s getting tough to think of Cthulhu as anything more than a pop culture plushie. It’s not a compelling start and the final few panels doesn’t leave you grasping the second issue. But for more of Re-Animator, we’d suggest the musical.