Royal Nonesuch takes a look at WIRE HANGERS #1 by Life of Agony bassist Alan Robert!
WIRE HANGERS marks a pretty strong debut for Alan Robert, whose primary claim to fame is being the bass player and songwriter for 90's hard rock band Life of Agony. Robert, who is a former pupil of Walt Simonson in the comic and cartooning program at New York's School of Visual Arts, writes and draws this creepy horror tale with some obvious passion and a strong sense of storytelling. The artwork brings together some scratchy collage work, cartoony figure work, and a striking color palette. These disparate elements combine to form a cohesive artistic vision that will draw favorable comparisons to Ben Templesmith and Renzo Podesta.
The story meanwhile is well realized, despite some issues with exposition. The shift in point of view that occurs early on is slightly jarring, but that is easily forgotten considering how well the book is paced and how real the characters feel. The reader is filled in on some great backstory very easily and quickly, and the dialogue has a lot of impact. There are a lot of secrets yet to be revealed, and they are built up very well. The writing is rather effortless, and it leads to a pretty exciting horror comic.
WIRE HANGERS was gestating in Alan Robert's, and in a way, it shows. It feels like a comic conceived by a veteran of the form. It's spooky, bloody, and a lot of fun to read.