Curious about Riley Rossmo's brand new horror book coming out next month? Well then click right here to read about what Eric calls "Truly unlike anything else I've seen in a horror comic in a long time."
Artwork by Riley Rossmo
Story by Riley Rossmo and Alex Link
Rebel Blood is truly different from anything else that Rossmo has worked on to date. I as a fan and a reader have been following Rossmo's material since Proof #6. His work is always unique, and in my opinion he is at the top of his game as an artist and a storyteller. But this book, especially for a first issue? Truly unlike anything else I've seen in a horror comic in a long time.
Rebel Blood follows the story of Chuck Neville, a man who seems to have lost his spirit and basic will to live. It seems like he's just going through the motions of his life, a firefighter who lost his family and is stuck out in the wilderness with just his own thoughts for company.
Without spoiling too much, Chuck is a bit of a daydreamer who is completely down on himself and when the outbreak hits things just seem to get worse for him. He is in no way your typical hero. In fact it seems as if running away from his problems and being in denial are what he does best.
Rossmo doesn't follow traditional storytelling in the book either. The first few pages of the story throw you right into the action before jumping around to several points in Chuck's recent past and present. It's a risky way to tell a story but definitely adds mystery and intrigue to the book.
The tone actually reminds me a lot of John Carpenter's The Thing, but instead of aliens we have a zombie mutation on our hands. It also seems to throw everything you know about zombies out the window, including just what can be infected and how the virus spreads.
The supporting cast is as interesting as our lead. We get hints that Chuck possibly has romantic feelings for someone other than his wife. There is also a poacher who seems to be the bane of the lead's existence.
I also really should mention something that I'm not sure readers will pick up on but is part of the book's pull: the fantasy scenes. Rossmo does this really interesting coloring technique to display that Chuck is fantasizing and without spoiling things. These brief glimpses provide an interesting juxtaposition to the insanity surrounding him.
Rebel Blood is the best single issue opening to a horror series I've read in quite some time and it will grip you in all the right ways. Chuck feels human and the ending leaves you wanting to know what happens next.
Rebel Blood #1 hits comic shops and digitally on March 28th. I highly recommend either buying it from your local shop or online as you absolutely do not want to miss this!
And be sure to check out Why I Love Comics #62, where Rossmo and I discuss the book a little.
Written or Contributed by: Eric Ratcliffe
The Outhouse is sponsored this week by Late Nite Draw. Recently featured on ComicsAlliances' Best Art Ever, he is a Chicago-based commissioned artist with a self-published Digital+Print one-shot coming out in October about the abominable snowman called ABOBAMANIMABBLE, and is also available for commissions. Check out some amazing art by clicking here or by clicking the banner at the top, and support the people who support The Outhouse.
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About the Author - Eric Ratcliffe
Eric Ratcliffe is the host of The Why I Love Comics podcast, as well as the writer of the long running and award winning webcomic New Comic Day! When not interviewing the biggest names in geek culture, Eric writes the occasional column about something he is enjoying or informing people about webseries, podcasts, gadgets or many other cool things. You can also find Eric on Email/twitter/facebook/youtube/steam/x-box live and many other social media avenues on the internet.
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