By Chris Tresson
Today, I’m having a look at Dead Inside #1 from John Arcudi, Toni Fejzula, and Dark Horse Comics. For the sake of trying to not spoil this book in the review (and I hate doing this, really), Here’s the information which was given in the solicitation:
The Jail Crimes Division of the Sheriff's Office in Mariposa County investigates crimes committed inside county jails. With a limited number of suspects who can't escape, these are usually easy cases to solve-but not this one. As Detective Linda Caruso gets closer to the heart of the case, she discovers uncomfortable truths about her friends, her job, and herself.
So that’s the gist of it… and to be completely honest with you, it of a bit slow start with this issue, but I did quite like. When I say it’s slow, there’s obviously a reason for that and that’s because John Arcudi has a lot of stuff he needs to get into it before the story can really get going. I can appreciate a story with a solid foundation for which the writer can build upon and Arcudi has done just that with this issue. It’s slow, yes, but by no means is it boring. I really liked the lead character in this. Detective Linda Caruso is a woman with problems. Problems which are slowly leaked out to us to give us more of a sense of who she is. It’s a really great example of how to write these sorts of characters, she’s the sort of ‘wounded hero’ we all like to get behind and see succeed.
The other thing I really liked was the intelligence that has gone into setting this story up. There’s some really great and interesting bits in here and I’m excited to see where it goes from here. I have absolutely no idea what’s going on or what’s going to happen, which is nice because I’ve usually come to my own conclusion of how the story will unfold by the end of most first issues… Didn’t happen with this book. I haven’t even tried to guess what’s coming next because I’d rather just wait and see. A solid start writing-wise from John Arcudi, and I think I can say I’ve never read anything like this before… I’ve seen it in movies and on TV, but never in a comic. I liked it.
The art for Dead Inside from Toni Fejzula is also quite nice, though there were pages I appreciated more than others. For me, it seems to me like Fejzula is dancing between styles here. The opening pages are great and they look a bit like they could’ve easily been drawn by Ian Bertram, some others are a lot less detailed and it throws you a bit… I’m not sure if this is a thing he does when drawing books, though. This is the first time I have encountered his artwork. There are some nice scenes, some better than others, but overall it’s a pretty nice looking story.
Dead Inside #1 is an interesting start from this creative team. I am intrigued by what I’ve read… I’m looking forward to seeing what’s coming in the next issue.
If you like your crime/murder mystery type stuff, CSI and whatnot, I think you’ll really enjoy this book. It’s definitely something different and off the top of my head, I can’t think of anything like it on the market right now. Pick it up and decide for yourself.
Dead Inside #1
Writer: John Arcudi
Artist: Toni Fejzula
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics