Review: The Evil Within #1

Full disclosure, I don’t know if I’ll end up playing the Bethesda/Tango Gameworks video game of the same name as this comic. I will definitely be back for more after reading this first issue though and will admit to being curious about the game. Titan has a solid track record of handling video game properties in their adapted comic book form so whenever they pick up a new property I’m interested. The only other company I can say that for is Dark Horse.

This comic instantly gave me a Silent Hill vibe, but not Silent Hill the games, but rather IDW’s original comic books based on the franchise. The comics, until this most recent volume, were based in the world and didn’t tie into the story from the games. It made it accessible and fun for someone like myself that didn’t play the games. The comics were great though because you could just be creeped out and enjoy the world.

The story begins with a woman driving with a stack of missing person flyers on her front seat. In somewhat typical fashion she runs out of gas and of course has no signal on her cell phone. It seems very typical, but there might be a reason for it all. She begins walking to a diner that she sees in the distance, but of course it’s empty when she arrives and with the rotting food on the plates it looks like it’s been empty for a while.

EvilWithin_Cover_AShe notices someone outside and so she runs out to confront them. They’re gone, but she does run into someone else. He tells her they have to go and points to people running after him and likely her as well. The people are mangled, some of them have objects piercing through their eyes and out the other side of their skulls and one dude looks like his head has been cut in two, but the blood is just kind of keeping it together. It’s safe to say that it only gets stranger and more grotesque from this point on.

There’s a couple of different elements to the story that I haven’t touched on, but those elements keep that typical horror opening from being to cliché. In fact you’re likely to appreciate the opening after reading the entire issue.

I don’t know what’s going on in the story just yet; it’s easy to understand what you’re reading, but the bigger picture is nowhere in sight, but that’s quite alright. Ian Edginton manages to make a story that’s interesting to read because it’s confusing. The different things that arise in the story rope you along for more, but in the best way possible.

What really shines is the artwork. There’s every bit of the intensity of a survival horror video game within the pages of this first issue. Alex Sanchez is challenged numerous times with visuals that don’t necessarily correlate with the dialogue, but he pulls it off. It’s not a new storytelling device in the comic industry, but when a talented artist does it right… well it feels fresh and honestly shows just how much of the story is told with the visuals.

The absolute best thing about this comic is that it puts you in the Halloween spirit. It tickles that slasher itch and is a welcomed addition to the horror genre. Even if you don’t plan on playing the video game you should check this comic out. If you do plan on playing the game this will likely get you hyped for it in the best way possible.

Score: 4/5

Writer: Ian Edginton Artist: Alex Sanchez Publisher: Titan Comics Price: $3.99 Release Date: 10/15/14 Format: Mini-Series; Print/Digital