Brought to you by OBS reviewer Albert
Halloween 2012 brings us an issue filled witches, werewolves, zombies, and vampires–Sam Johnson’s Cabra Cini returns in “Bad Voodoo,” Kelci Crawford tells us the story of “Brody and Lisa,” Marcus E.T. tells us about a girl who was “Born Dead,” and Patrick McEvoy returns with a tale of the vampiric “Recovery Unit.” (From the Hamtramck Idea Men Website – http://idea-men.us/if30_gallery.html)
IF-X Volume 3 presents four short stories. Snippets actually.
Snippet 1 is Cabra Cini in Bad Voodoo. This little tale is a Halloween party where the main character, Cabra, explains to her friends why her magic failed her. The moment is ruined by the sudden reveal that one of the guests at the party is none other than her arch enemy Demonicus who brings along his one remaining zombie. The heroine defeats her foe with a single swing and then throws him out. She then continues the explanation. Why let a little thing like an attempt on your life ruin a perfectly good monologue?
Snippet 2 is Brody and Lisa. Two “normal” teenagers with extremely early curfews. And, a secret. Brody is a werewolf. Lisa is a werecat. Two species. Supposedly not compatible, but they are teenagers and in love.
Snippet 3 is Born Dead. Unlike the other parts of this graphic novel, Born Dead is written as opposed to drawn. Ellie Wyse is a teenager in the year 2071. The Earth is basically a dead planet and she spends her time wishing she was pretty like the people she sees in the old pictures. Without the sun, good food or drinkable water, Ellie has gray skin and yellow eyes. And Ellie has another problem. She’s hunted by monsters with armored skin. When the monster attacks, she gets a peek beneath the armor and sees that the monsters are the people and she is the monster. With this revelation, she embraces her “life” as a zombie.
Snippet 4 is Recovery Unit. Tabby is a vampire, but she doesn’t know. All she knows is that she needs something. She follows her normal schedule until she finds it. What she needs is to feed. As she hunts, she remembers the night before when she was struck by a passing car and killed. She had no knowledge of becoming a vampire. Finally, she finds a couple and prepares to slake her thirst only to be interrupted by the two vampires who turned her. It was an act of mercy. A new life after her old one was ended on the bumper of a car. But, there’s a few rules. One of them is not to go on a rampage. She decides to give it a try.
All four of the little stories show great promise, but they fall short in the execution. In every case, the story is nothing but talking heads. Everything is discussed, analyzed and understood. There’s nothing for the reader to discover. It’s all laid out in painstaking detail.
On the plus side, the ideas behind the stories were very imaginative. While not unique by any means, they’re still relatively fresh takes on old ideas. I could see any one of them being expanded. Cabra Cini will be. They have her debut up on the site and more will be coming. As for the others, only time will tell.