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Hack/Slash: Land of Lost Toys #3-- ADVANCE REVIEW

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Hack/Slash: Land of Lost Toys #3-- ADVANCE REVIEW

Credits

  • Words: Tim Seeley
  • Art: Dave Crosland
  • Inks: Dave Crosland
  • Colors: Roald Munoz
  • Story Title: N/A
  • Publisher: Devil's Due Publishing
  • Price: $3.25
  • Release Date: Feb 15, 2006

Cassie and Vlad’s confrontation with the nightmare killer comes to an unexpected and messy end.

Cassie Hack and her towering companion Vlad, the so-called slasher-killers, have been locked in conflict with an opponent unusual even for them. The vengeful ghost of a disturbed little boy has been invading people’s dreams, animating their childhood toys and memories in disturbing ways. Now the ghost has come gunning for Cassie while in the waking world, Vlad can only watch in helpless dismay. But there are things lurking in Cassie’s memory that her spectral visitor never counted on…

When the Hack/Slash series began, I assumed this would be a comic far from anything that would hold my interest, never being a fan of slasher horror. What I wasn’t counting on was the amusingly twisted sense of humor that writer Tim Seeley brings to the book. The toy theme of this particular outing holds many opportunities for Seeley to send up famous childhood icons, bringing a healthy dose of humor and the ridiculous to the violence and gore. A meatheaded He-Man look-alike is seen locked in melodramatic battle with a canine cousin of the Thundercats. Cassie is assaulted by disgustingly cute Pokemon doppelgangers with enough energy to give anyone epilepsy. And so it goes throughout this entertaining final installment of the miniseries. There is also a surprising guest appearance that will have unexpected significance for Hack/Slash fans. Being new to the book, this did not have as much impact on me but the twist was interesting nonetheless.

My reaction to the art was a little more mixed however. On issue 1, I felt that Dave Crosland had a very appealing and loose cartoonist style that lent itself well to the humor of Seeley’s story. In this issue, that often remains the case, though Crosland’s pencils become even looser and his figures further deformed. This is partly an intentional choice, I suspect, as much of the issue takes place in a horrific nightmare. That element of grotesquery is probably exactly what the story needs though the excesses of the art reminded me why I was never drawn to the horror genre in the first place. If you don’t mind a bit of the ol’ ultraviolence and rubbery monsters only casually acquainted with anatomy, you’ll probably derive more enjoyment from Crosland’s artistic choices.

Ultimately, Hack/Slash: Land of Lost Toys was an amusing miniseries that delved into dark places without ever taking itself too seriously. I’m intrigued to see where Cassie and Vlad’s crusade takes them next.

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