The Abaddon is one of the best things I’ve read all year. It’s been a pretty weak year for comics, but there’s been some shining examples of the medium. The Abaddon joins those bright spots and raises my interest in publisher Z2 Comics line up even more (check out Welcome to Showside and Carver for more from Z2 Comics). It’s almost a shame to tell you anything about this book. I went in knowing nothing and I will tell you that it’s a far better reading experience. This might be the first time I’ve said in a review to stop reading the review and just go buy and read the book for yourself. I’m serious, I don’t care if you skip the rest of the review because I think you’ll enjoy the book more without my two cents.
If you are still with us, we meet Ter. He knocks on the door of an apartment asking about the open house. His head is wrapped and he has a suitcase in hand. A bombshell of a woman shows him around the place and he decides that it’s worth taking. He joins the apartment which houses five adults only to discover that they’re all a bit crazy. After one of them puts a cat in the garbage disposal, Ter decides to leave the apartment… only he can’t seem to. The front door won’t open and he is apparently the only one not okay with this.
I’m going to give you a second chance to leave. I know, that’s even rarer! It’s like you found the holo-foil card in the center of the pack! There’s a bit of spoilers from here on out.
The Abaddon is the complex look at Ter’s life. God, it’s so incredibly difficult not to spoil this. In a way there are two stories happening. Ter’s life before he came to the Abaddon and his life in the Abaddon. The brilliance of it is that everything we see and learn in both stories ties into the other story. There is no useless info and even the most unimportant detail is important if you’re paying attention.
Koren Shadmi based this story off a play. Having never seen the play I don’t know what the similarities and differences are. I can say that he layers this story brilliantly and that his character development is amazing. You will feel a wide range of emotions about Ter by the end of the story. You will almost always root for him, but often times you’ll just feel something about his predicament. It’s been a long time since I cared so much about a character.
The Abaddon was originally a webcomic so the format is set for a landscape view. It’s really a great format for the story. Shadmi tends to stick to a three by two panel layout, but he plays around with it whenever needed. It’s clean and simple, but it works. There’s plenty of mystery for the story and when reading it the web format really helps play up the reveals.
Other than that, the art is very detailed. There’s a sense of style to the art that keeps it from being photorealistic, but it’s very detailed otherwise. There’s realistic body shapes for the characters and the variety of designs makes the characters look real. The coloring plays a huge role in the story. There’s not a lot of variety to the coloring. It’s all muted tones of greenish blue for the most part. There’s black and white in play as well, but the only color that really stands out is red. I think some of this is very intentional, but otherwise it’s just this great contrast to the rest of the story.
I’ve never been so unsatisfied after a review. Usually after a review I feel good, like I let the world know about a comic and now they’re going to go check it out. But there’s so much I just can’t bring myself to say about the book and yet I really want to. I want to discuss it with others that have read it and get their thoughts and opinion on it. So do me a favor, go check it out and come back here and talk about it. Spoilers in the comments are welcomed and so I’ll be waiting, but in the meantime read what may be the best book of 2015, if it’s not then it’s damn close to being the best.
The Abaddon Creator: Koren Shadmi Publisher: Z2 Comics Price: $24.99 Release Date: 10/28/15 Format: Hardcover; Print