Overview

Friday the 13th #1

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Friday the 13th #1

Credits

  • Words: Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray
  • Art: Adam Archer
  • Inks: Peter Guzman
  • Colors: Jonny Rench
  • Story Title: Friday the 13th
  • Publisher: DC Comics/WildStorm
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Dec 6, 2006

Jason Vorhees returns to stalk the myriad of nubile teenagers gravitating to Camp Blood in this new on-going series for WildStorm.

Growing up in the 80’s was an interesting time for someone like me. I was an avid horror fan and I flocked to every single slasher film being committed to celluloid at the time. Now I know that the movie Halloween came just a few short years before the release of Friday the 13th, but it never quite blitzed my teenaged mind in the same way. Sure, the killer wore a cool make-shift William Shatner mask while he stalked poor Jamie Lee Curtis all around the neighborhood, but that never quite lived up to the more malevolent looking Jason Vorhees.

That guy just flat out eliminated his prey in various and disgusting ways, but he made it all look cool while wearing that classic goalie hockey mask. What’s even cooler is the fact that WildStorm has managed to snag the rights (from New Line) to publish the notorious killer’s murderous exploits in sequential form under the guise of a new on-going series. Much to my surprise though, the title has even been bolstered by the writing team of Palmiotti and Gray to really give this series that needed one-two punch for legitimacy sakes.

The writers introduce readers to a brand new supporting cast of teenaged counselors all being summoned to Crystal Lake once again, despite the gory history of the camp. What’s also really interesting here is how the dialogue seems fresh and playful, giving this opening issue a solid base to work from for future installments. Palmiotti and Gray even did their homework and briefly summarized the history of the mythology and expertly chronicled all the events leading up to the inaugural film’s powerful ending. They also managed to squeeze in some observations about urban legends involving other camp-fire type stories to really cement the concept. I have to credit these two writers for being so versatile with this medium, since they have proven their skills already in other genres (like Jonah Hex). Now it’s so obvious that they can handle the cliché and formulaic trappings of the horror genre and make them work so well.

The other interesting aspect to the series is the choice of Adam Archer as artist. Now I am not all that familiar with his work, but I did enjoy his fluid storytelling throughout the issue. For whatever reasons though, his work kind of reminded me of a cross between Ryan Sook and David Lopez. In fact the comparisons to Ryan Sook may be a little obvious given that the artist did do the cover, but I think it’s a fair assessment to make. I liked the way he interpreted Jason in the opening scene and much of the visceral impact was lessened in favor for building good suspense around the characters.

This is a good book overall. The story crafted here by Palmiotti and Gray started off on the right foot and it was never dull or cheesy like past incarnations of this series in sequential form. I’m hooked after one issue, and I am anxious to see where the story develops from here. So if you like your horror to resonate with more intelligence and less goriness, then I suggest giving this series a chance. It looks likes Jason Vorhees is back with a vengeance and the payoff is just over the horizon. That is, if you can survive a night at Camp Blood!

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