Comic: "Cry For Dawn #1"
Published by: Other
Written by: Various
Artist: Joseph Michael Linsner
Reviewer: Dr. Boogie
Plot: Four short stories that are completely unrelated, apart from the fact that they are all horror-themed. Also, a couple of the stories were written by the artist.
Review: A quartet of horror stories with an unnamed half-naked woman providing some glib, and noticeably pun-less, introductions. Sounds like a pretty solid horror anthology to me.
All the illustration is done by Joseph Michael Linsner, and he does a pretty solid job of it. A couple times in the course of the book, he switches from comic drawings with heavier lines over to pencil drawings from an artist’s sketch pad (albeit very well done sketches), but I didn’t find much to complain about there. In particular, Linsner does a fine job illustrating both gore and hideous monsters in the book, in addition to the poor human slobs at the center of each tale.
The four short stories, however, are a bit hit and miss. The first, “Rainstorms and Maniacs”, tells a somewhat frightening story, but really, there’s not all that much to it. I wasn’t expecting a lot of character development from a short horror story, but there’s not even that much in terms of real horror. It’s more like a straightforward description of event, like something from a police blotter. “Tokens”, the one immediately after, is a better example of what a horror story should be, but again, it only seems to introduce the ideas at the very end of the story. Had it been expanded to the length of a segment from something like Creepshow, it might have developed into something great.
But it was the final story that really threw me off. Entitled “Kid’s Meal”, it was actually written by the writer of “Tokens,” and the artist himself. In the “word from the artist” section at the end of the book, Linsner talks about what scares him, with a ban on abortion being chief among them. This fear of his emerges in the form of a full page, almost forth wall-breaking moment in “Kid’s Meal” that really took me out of the story. Even more bizarre, the book's introduction by Stephen Bissette states that horror should be about more than just straight gore, and yet that’s pretty much the entire basis of the “Kid’s Meal” story.
In his review of House of Mystery, our own Protoclown mentioned that horror anthology series tend to lose steam and peter out slowly due to the inconsistent quality of their many stories. I can definitely see some of that in Cry for Dawn, but overall, it seems to average out as pretty good. I haven’t had a chance to read the issues that followed, but hopefully, the trend was maintained.
(Scored on a 0.5 - 5 pickles rating: 0.5 being the worst and 5 being the best)
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