Chum #1 can be described in a lot of ways. Gross meets sexy meets horror meets beach babes. It’s all of these things in more. You know you’ve got an interesting book on your hands when hours after you’ve put it down you’re still thinking about. Chum is one of those books. Set in the beachside town of Kingsford Island, it follows several characters as they encounter violent and mysterious activities on the eve of big surfing competition. Summer is a store owner that caters to the reckless and fun-loving townsfolk. It becomes clear that there’s another layer behind her normal job. Summer is revealed to have a taste for danger. Her hunger seems to bring out the beast in most men and her plan to is use them to get out of the hellhole she calls her life. Summer has two men in her life that further complicate this plan. One is a depressed and hard-drinking Detective named Standard. The other is a cutthroat criminal with which she has a sexual history named Penny. Most of the book follows Summer’s plot and it all leads to an awesome cliff-hanger. It’s hard to root for any of the characters introduced in this series. They all seem self-absorbed, cruel and sleazy. But they all do represent a kind of old school detective story theme with the femme fatale, the criminal and the detective types. It has all the elements of a classic murder mystery. Suspense is the name of the game.
The artwork is Chum is handled by co-creator Sam Kivela. There’s a distinct mood that he brings to the beach scenes like there’s always something lurking in the shadows. It’s hard not to think of Pulp Fiction the way that some of the page scenes are set up and that’s a very good thing. There are flashes of unexpected violence that pop out of the moody background.
Overall Chum #1 is something that I did not expect to like at first but it has grown on me since I first read it. Everyone can relate in some way or another to wanting to escape from their current life. We may not all go to the extremes that Summer does but her motivations are relatable. Pick up Chum if you want something unique to read and don’t be surprised if you’re hooked!
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Chum #1 Writers: Ryan L. Lindsay Artist: Sami Kivela Publisher: ComixTribe Price: $3.99 Release Date: 5/4/16 Format: Mini-Series; Print/Digital