I adore this series (and its creators, Todd Dezago and Craig Rousseau), so I was thrilled to get an advance preview of the Annual, the first issue since the book moved from Dark Horse to Image. (Just to get my bias out of the way upfront.) It’s an extended 32-page story with no ads, due out February 20 to kick off the ongoing series to come.
The premise is the same, a group of paranormal investigators who are themselves paranormal. This time, they’re taking on the Jersey Devil, which under Craig’s pen looks like a horse-headed red dragon, quite impressive. Although he eats the doggie, boo. (I know, how predictable. There are at least eight people killed in the comic (not on-screen), but all I care to mention is the pet.)
I apologize, I don’t mean for this to devolve into a play-by-play, but that’s how this comic makes me feel. I am totally sucked in and along for the ride, enjoying the excitement and dying to find out what happens next.
I can’t wait to find out what MG’s story is — I have a weakness for the cute, strong, smart, silent type with a secret. I love Arisa, the telepathic team leader, because she’s a character that avoids the stereotypes that dog comics women. (And she makes a call-out to the WWF.) Molly’s a sweet ghost, Big’s a Buddhist sasquatch, Choopie’s a hoot… it’s a great mix of personalities and abilities.
Plus, it’s fun. I was laughing out loud at Choopie’s room — among the clutter is an Archie comic and a Skull Troll doll, which means it vaguely resembles my room. Except I throw my pizza boxes away when I’m done with them.
I was surprised at some of the secrets revealed among the characters this issue, but it also doesn’t stint on adventure. It felt like a really good episode of something like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, blending humor, action, characterization, horror, and astounding abilities into an entertaining, high-adrenaline read.
Find out more at the Perhapanauts website. (The publisher provided a digital review copy.)