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Yeater, Adam – World of Knonx


World of Knonx

So I have this vague, half-formed idea that there can be too many pages in some wordless stories. Wordless minis are fine, wordless comics are usually at least understandable, but once you get into wordless graphic novel territory, you pretty much need to be a master of the craft to come away with anything coherent. The other option, of course, is that I’m a dummy who can’t understand longer works unless they’re spelled out for me. You may be right about that! But I can only write reviews with the brain that I’ve got, and this poor old sucker basically tapped out halfway through (but I did read it to the end; I am a professional, after all!). Positives: this is a wildly imaginative world, and while I know there’s no way it was financially possible, a lot could have been glossed over if he had the resources to color this sucker like he did the cover. The only synopsis we get are brief descriptions of the two types of creatures: Norks and Mogz. Norks are basically teletubbie looking things with worms in place of their stomachs and faces. Mogz are roughly the same thing, but with robot bodies instead. Or I could have just said that Norks are on the cover image and a Mogz is on the sample page. Anyway, they’re both fighting over the tree of life, and when Norks take fruit from the tree and put in in their heads in place of their giant eyeball, they get super powers. Basically. This is where words would have come in helpful, because how do they stay alive without an eyeball? Sometimes their worms get removed and they’re fine, sometimes they die. Why? This volume also contains at least three stories, but in an entirely wordless book you at least need to clearly delineate when that happens. My only clue was that “the end” showed up a few times, but then the book launched right back into the world. I get the impression, and this could be completely wrong, that this book was produced over the course of years online, probably with a lot of feedback from his readers, and they most likely spent some time talking about who was who, what was happening, motivations, etc. But for somebody like me coming in cold, this one failed to grab me. Maybe if I spent more time with it, maybe if I talked to the author and had bits explained to me, as there are a number of genuinely interesting sections. But as it stands I can only recommend this to people who are looking for a puzzle to be solved, or something that leaves a lot of room to talk about in your book club. And if you do pick this for your book club, please invite me, because I’d love to see that conversation. It’s listed at $22 on Amazon, which is the only place I see it these days…

Yeater, Adam – Blood Desert #1


Blood Desert #1

When somebody sends me a pile of comics, I like to go back to the beginning and review that first. Makes sense, right? Well, I also have to include the caveat that the vast majority of artists improve as they make more comics, so anything I say about #1 was most likely already fixed by #26. Yep, according to his website, he’s already up to #26, and this one was released three years ago, making him incredibly prolific. I mentioned in my last review of his work that I’d read an interview with him where he mentioned his grindhouse and gore influences, and this one seems right in line with those sensibilities. Our hero (?), or at least the guy on the cover, is wandering around a post-apocalyptic landscape and stumbles across a military base. He finds a CD player, which distracts him from the gigantic monster that’s creeping up behind him. The rest of the issue is a mostly silent tale of him trying to get away from the creature, with a nuke thrown in, as you may have guessed from the title. It’s… fine. I’m at a place where I need either a bit more substance in a comic or a whole lot more mayhem, and this one didn’t land on either axis. I’m also assuming the chaos ratchets up in future issues, so maybe I’ll skip ahead to issue #10 or so for the next review, especially as it doesn’t seem like I have to worry about keeping up with any long, complex narrative. This particular issue was so-so for me, but if you like his general aesthetic, there is a whole lot more of it out there in the world, so you’re in luck! $5

Yeater, Adam – Translucent



So in a rarity for me, I found an interview with Adam and read it before starting my review. I confirmed what I suspected from some of the other comics he sent my way: he’s influenced by grindhouse movies, post-apocalyptic stuff and gore in general. So leave it to me to randomly pick what is (probably) the least gory of his comics for my first one to review! This is his take on the Invisible Man story by H.G. Wells. In this comic our hero is at the end of his rope, as he can’t get anything to both turn invisible and stay invisible. Frustrated, he turns to Aleister Crowley; I might be spelling that wrong but it’s spelled a couple of different ways in the comic too. Naturally, deciding to complete his experiment with invisibility through a deal with a demon comes with some drawbacks, and we end up with an entirely different interpretation of his origin story. His artistic style is deceptively simple; his backgrounds are full of details, for example, but in this comic in particular the faces of his characters could have used a bit more emphasis, as they mostly didn’t change much no matter what happened. Still, I liked the twist on the origin story, and it’s not like I’m going to judge a guy who sent me maybe 20 comics based on one random sample. Maybe I’ll review the giant collection of comics next and see where I’m at. Meanwhile, this is maybe sorta worth a look, with more to come from me. $4