Sunday, August 2, 2009
From the Reading Pile: Daybreak Episode One
Daybreak Episode One
By Brian Ralph
A zombie book with two very unique qualities - no zombies and it is told in first person. The first person stands out the most. I don't think I have ever seen a comic from that point of view before. As with all first person narratives (especially in a visual medium), it works to a lesser extant than one would hope. While it is on its surface an awesome idea, it becomes contrived as there is no way to truly make it seamless. No matter the conceit, it is impossible for the reader to interact in the environment of the graphic novel.
The lack of zombies is nifty. This isn't a Walking Dead type thing where you see them in the beginning and end or every once in a while, there are NO ZOMBIES in this zombie book. This forces Ralph to make his characters sympathetic and believable. It is just a tad drawn out in this volume, but it works.
Art wise, the book has a Jeffery Brown type feel. It is a cartoon with rough lines that are surprisingly consistent. The designs work and the story telling is as fine as it can be for the concept.
This is an intriguing idea. Only reading further volumes will declare whether or not it is a particularly successful idea. Unfortunately, I don't think I am ready to commit more time to this one as of now.
For anyone interested in the book, it is distributed by Bodega and first appeared as a webcomic at newbodega.blogspot.com.