Villordsutch reviews Image Comics’ Bedlam #9…
Having no knowledge of a comic sometimes is a bit of a pain due to the fact you have no idea what the ruddy flip is going on. You can be appear to be between issues of an on-going tale that has been rolling for the past few months and in you stroll into the pages, oblivious and scratching you head; this can lead to a perhaps slightly negative review whilst the avid reader is in love with the issue, and despises the reviewer.
Initially when I opened Bedlam I thought I had entered into such a place of head scratching and being oblivious; however, mid-way through I had more of a gist with what was happening in this city called Bedlam. Though being truthful I was/am rather lost on a few characters, – for example the rather unhinged masked psychopath Madder Red was also our Police Detective’s jittery assistant (Thank you Comic Book Series Wiki for this info). How did he become cured? Also, how did our masked hero get out of his bindings, sat between the rather dead patrons of a restaurant and Madder Red and his goons surrounding him over fifteen years ago? I am unsure if answers for these questions have been given or are yet to be teased out, though these small elements of wonder do not impact on the story being told in this issue.
The story has hooked me with a fantastic lure made from the grotesquely morbid opening and through to an unwrapping of a city wide, suicide inducing, mystery all at the right pace to entice a new reader; making them interested in what’s unfolding in Bedlam. The praise goes to the entire team involved not only the story writer Nick Spencer but to the artist Ryan Browne who has drawn with such speed that the players in this story appear to be vibrating. The use of his palette has given this world a frantic motion, painting onto the pages a place that is moving unnervingly fast. Whilst I’m here I’d like to mention the cover by Frazer Irving which is the bow to this present as first glance it was a fellow just about to hit a pavement, second glance tells you a bit more.
Bedlam is a comic that I think may become a firm favourite of mine. Yes there are questions on what may be happening but this issue has enough intrigue to allow those wonders to be washed away. You would do well picking this up and at the same time seeing if you can find a few of the back issues to open the world up for you.
Villordsutch is married with kids and pets. He looks like a tubby Viking and enjoys science fiction. Follow him on Twitter.