Review - Ragemoor #2

To say that Ragemoor is a strange comic would be a grave understatement. Writer Jan Strnad and artist Richard Corben (lettered by Nate Piekos of Blambot) are taking the story down an even eerier path and, while it's not going to be everyone's cup of tea, it deserves to be read. Dark Horse has got quite the tale of horrow on their hands here.

The second issue is really about Herbert's love for Anoria and his disgust for Ragemoor. He loves Anoria and wants to be with her, but both Ragemoor itself and a poacher named Tristano has been interfering with that love. Herbert being the man of action that he is decides to take some action and put a stop to the loving from afar, venturing into the grounds of Ragemoor with his servant Bodrick.

It's easy enough to say that Bodrick recommending Herbert not use the help as an army (considering they're insects) was a little weird, but this is Ragemoor, which means it's only going to get weirder. Herbert has had it with the baboons that roam the grounds of Ragemoor and goes on a spree, which leads to Ragemoor opening up its belly and exposing Herbert to the horrors deep within.

Edgar Allen Poe is one of the masters of this sort of psychological horror and Strnad must be a big fan. He's managed to inmbue Ragemoor #2 with a sense of filth, which isn't a bad thing. The core of the book is uneasieness and a sense of being slightly off. There's something unsettling about maggots swarming a victim being sacrificed and insects swarming a wounded insect and devouring him. It works though.

The black and white tone set by Corben matches the level of (as referenced by Herbert in the book) "phantasmagoria." The characters are depicted with really only one emotion strewn across their faces: abject horror. There's nothing for the characters to be excited about in Ragemoor #2 and it shows. If the book were illustrated in color it wouldn't work nearly as well, so Corben deserves to commended.

The thing that Ragemoor #2 does best is convey a sense of dread. You know things are likely to get worse before they get better, but you continue reading anyway. It's definitely a departure from a lot of the other stuff out there and deserves some manner of attention. It's an interesting read that will really have you trying to shake this urge that a drear is coming and you can't avoid it.

Ragemoor #2 is in stores April 18 and interiors are below.