Review: Dark Horse Presents #4

17944If ever there was an issue to begin reading, it’s this one. There is so much top tier talent in this book that it makes it a worthy purchase. The first amazing tale in this collection is Beasts of Burden, “Food Run.” It’s about our four legged occult detectives trying to capture and stop a goblin from stealing and killing chickens. Right away Evan Dorkin’s dialog for the chickens is funny and memorable. The story is short, but has the strange bittersweet ending that the series always has. It’s a fun tale, but still maintains its serious nature and was definitely another great entry in the series. The next major entry in the issue is The Adventures of Dog Mendoca and Pizza Boy. It’s the origin story for Dog Mendoca who appears as an older man that is well past his prime. The story breaks the fourth wall as Mendoca talks to the audience and even brings up the fact that Dark Horse has paid him for his story. I really enjoyed the tale as it had a solid mix of heart and soul, but also sprinkles of comedy and light-hearted moments. I’m very much looking forward to the story continuing in the next issue as this was a strong first tale in the book.

Continuing on our hit series appearing in the book we have the next chapter in Criminal Macabre. You may recall my review for the last issue, but what I didn’t mention is that Cal is dead. I can say that now since this book mentions it in the first bit of dialog, but any ways Call is dead. He’s comeback as one of the undead and must lead a war against the dark. He’d rather drink and smoke and find some way to beat death though, so it’s going to take some convincing to get him going. It’s another great Cal story and if you read last week’s issue then you won’t want to miss this one.

Sure these books are the big time creators, but other notable stories include: Number 13 by Robert Love and Daniel Walker, Age of Reptiles: The Body by Ricardo Delgado which was particularly powerful. Some other stories: Resident Alien by Peter Hogan and Steve Parkhouse which was very strange, but interesting as hell. Finder: Third Worlds by Carla Speed McNeil which was different, but I found myself really liking it. The ending story which is just one page seemed MAD magazine inspired and was very hilarious and was done by Patrick Alexander.

The writing and stories for this issue were all top of the line and made for a great read. I liked the small collection of stories that it had as it made it easy to digest and not so dependent upon stretching a story for issue sake. The smaller chunks of storytelling really seemed to focus the creators so that they would put their best work into each story. Even though it’s already on issue 4 this is a great place to jump on the series as several new tales are beginning that you won’t want to miss out on.

Score: 4/5

Writers: Various

Artists: Various

Publisher: Dark Horse Comics

Price: $7.99