Writer/Editor/Creator/Co-Letterer: Joey Turnage
Illustrator/Co-Letterer: Ian Miller
Colorist: Fredrik Mattsson
Publisher: Elixir Comics
WHAT IS IT?
A nightmare-themed horror story with kids as the main characters.
It's like Nightmare on Elm Street if the main characters were younger and the villain was a monster instead of a burned guy with claw hands.
WHAT’S IT ABOUT?
Phil's a pretty normal kid, just trying to live a normal life. Sure, he's got a bully who picks on him, and his dad isn't around anymore, but he's managing.
His mother, on the other hand, isn't doing so well. She seems emotionally unstable, lost in her own dream world where she visits her husband.
She also seems to know something others don't. Something that might be tied to the bad dream haunting Phil. Something real and dangerous.
But what does it want with Phil and the other kids it's taken? Just what is it and why does it seem tied to music? What really happened to Phil's father?
Turnage and Miller play on childhood fears well, representing them on the page in a way that resonates with your younger self
The opening few pages really bring the experience of a night terror to life
The MISSING poster of the kid from the opening sequence is a subtle way to show that the thing from the closet truly is "something real"
Word balloons seem hand-drawn, with lots of fun effects and flourishes, giving the story an organic, younger feel
Ian Miller's line art use of perspective amps up the terror in scenes
Fredrik Mattsson's use of black, purple, pink and yellow for the boogeyman and supernatural elements and is a nice visual cue for when the horror elements start to infect the real world, especially in issue #2
Sound effects incorporated into the art gives a dynamic and well-incorporated feel
It definitely seems like there's some Neil Gaiman/Sandman influence here, along with other classic childhood horror tropes from the '80s and '90s
WHAT DOESN’T WORK?
Without the cursing, the book would probably be fine for younger audiences, depending on your feelings toward the horror elements
The narration, especially in the opening sequence (shown below), can feel a little too conversational, which takes away from the terror aspects a little
WHY SHOULD I READ IT?
While the first two issues of Something Real are merely laying the groundwork for the greater story and reveals to come later, this is a high quality horror comic that definitely has firm roots in TV, comics and horror films from decades past. It's definitely a strong start for what looks to be a promising tale of terror by Turnage, Miller & Mattsson.
HOW DO I BUY IT?
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