Review: Unfair (One-Shot)

There are times when anyone involved in comics becomes tired of the medium. The industries drama is second only to high school and after a while you develop apathy, which is terrible. Add in the high cost of printed comics and suddenly it becomes a burden to read them and deal with them. Occasionally I take a break from the medium because it can frankly be grueling especially on the end in which I’m now involved. But then a book like Unfair comes along and brings me to tears and reminds me why I deal with all the shit that comes with the medium. Issues like this are the absolute reason that I love the comic medium more than any other. Sure I can name several movies or TV shows that left me emotional; hell even a few video games have burrowed their way into my heart, but I’ve lost track of how many comics jumped into my chest and ran me through the gamut in which I’m currently feeling. Unfair.inddI will not be able to tell you a whole lot about the story due to the way it’s constructed, but I will give you a glimpse. It kicks off on a very rural road in the country. A father has just finished icing a cupcake that he made himself, for his one year old son. As he lights the candle he turns around to find his son floating in the air and suddenly sucked out the kitchen window. He races outside to his truck and as he reaches the door he hears a scarecrow in the front yard talking to him. It tells him that he shouldn’t bother chasing after his son and that his year is up. The father is confused by the statement and disregards it as he gets into his truck and chases after his son, but his hardships in getting to him do not end there.

The worst thing about this story is that it’s better each time you read it, but also far more emotional the second or third time around. Jeez… I need to pause for a moment… okay. The writing is nothing short of amazing. The length is short and really there is very little said outside of the same speech said to ward off the father. It’s this simplicity in the dialog that makes the payoff so rewarding and the conclusion spectacular.

The artist is trusted to pull a lot of the weight of this story, with the body language and facial expressions of the father and the things he encounters on his journey to find his son. There is a perfect balance between story and art that is so rare to find in comics, but this creative team hits it here. The art really has this fantastic look that isn’t overly detailed and yet I would never describe it as simple in composition.

This is one of if not the greatest one-shot stories I have ever read. It’s sad, it’s romantic, but most off all it’s tremendously good. I’m not afraid to say that it made me cry and even though it did, I gladly read it a second time and cried again. This comic book managed not only to give me a great tale to enjoy for years to come, but also reminded me of everything that is truly great and magical about the medium. It’s going to be hard for anything else this year to top this incredible story that’s for sure.

Score: 5/5

Writer: Vance Summer Artist: Sandy Jarrell Publisher: Monkey Brain Comics Price: $.99 Release Date: 1/23/13 Buy it here!