Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Comic Review: Fall of the House of Usher #1

I'm not a hardcore follower of comics, illustration or popular art so I didn't know Richard Corben from anyone. I was more interested in a comic retelling of Poe's tale.

Richard Corben ends up being a fairly well known (famous?) illustrator known initially for his work in Heavy Metal magazine but working prolifically in many arenas since the 70's.  Turns out his style fits quite well for this story.  His human creations are bulbous and odd.  His backgrounds are detailed and sharp.  His style wouldn't be called realistic but a strange tale such as Fall doesn't necessarily call for pure reality.

The story itself is slightly "adapted" from Poe's version though the basics remain, an old friend asks for a visit to his strange mansion buried deep in the heart of some strange woods.  As they get reacquainted the homeowner becomes increasingly unhinged and his relationship with his sister is odd to say the least.

I'll be interested in seeing the conclusion in issue #2 as issue #1 really just sets the scene while the true craziness and "fall" occur at the very end of the story.  How Corben portrays this ending will be very interesting to see.  I would recommend reading the actual Edgar Allen Poe story in full before reading the comic as it allowed me to understand a lot of the nuances and background that perhaps aren't able to be conveyed in a short form comic like this.  I felt like I enjoyed the comic a lot more becuase I knew the story beforehand.

Its an interesting comic and a solid, short feature crafted by an famous artist based on and even more famous short story.  The comic is produced by Dark Horse and was released on May 15.


RC Miller said...

Corben is an amazing artist but often his "adaptations" are shallow. I felt similar to you with this version of Usher, and issue 2 will likely be no different. I highly recommend a 2012 Dark Horse release called "Ragemoor" which Corben illustrated and this dude named Jan Strnad wrote- outstanding stuff! One exception of Corben's adaptations not falling short: In 2000 DC/Vertigo published Corben's interpretation of "The House On The Borderland" by this British weirdo named William Hope Hodgson who died during WW1. Do yourself a favor and seek it out.

spalind (Dan Spalinger) said...

Will do!!