Out today, is Death be Damned from Boom! Created and written by Ben Acker (Deadpool v Gambit), Ben Blacker (Thunderbolts) and Andrew Miller. Illustrated by Hannah Christenson (Mouse Guard) and colored by Juan Useche (Sombra) with letters by Colin Bell (Mayday). Set in the old west, it’s a tale of death, magic rituals and some good old spaghetti western style vengeance.
The issue begins with a posse of men riding off into the horizon, away from a disheveled farm. A woman is floating face down in a small pond, shot and left for dead. The woman suddenly is awake and heads up to the small house, to find her husband and daughter murdered. She bury’s her kin and take’s the last living horse into town, with her husband’s rifle. Meanwhile in town, South Pass City Wyoming, an undertaker is receiving a new customer. The undertaker is no normal professional though, and he begins a bizarre ritual upon the deceased. The woman arrives in town looking for the men who left the farm, and poses as a working girl at brothel to gain access to one of the men. Upon finding the man, and she is promptly shot down again. Her body is then turned over to the town undertaker, who then performs his spirit ritual on her as well. The woman again wakes up some time later inside the morgue, to which point the undertaker starts to explain the ritual and how it allows him communicate with the other side. He is looking for his wife who passed, and needs the woman’s help to find her. Staying on her own path she goes to leave, however the undertaker having his own plans stops her the only way he knows how, with her own guns.
This comic has lots of potential, however I thought the thing most lacking was information. I wanted to know so much more, what was this woman like before, where did she come from? Most of all, what the hell happened to make all of this come about? More info on the men who murdered her family, or even on the weird undertaker. The one direction drive of the protagonist is refreshing, however there’s practically no character development. The backgrounds are beautiful and go with the old west ascetic, however the shape of faces changing constantly from panel to panel is off putting and the lack of violence in others. What this woman is going through is horrific and specific panels should convey that. I am intrigued as to where this is all heading, and how the undertaker is connected. But most of all, how does this woman keep cheating death? I guess it’s because…
…Death be Damned.