Dear Ghost Factory. What Should I Read?
By: Rob Neil Gruszecki
Fists fly, blood flows, explosions echo, swords collide, machines crash, warriors explore ancient arts and everybody fights. Action, unbridled and intense leaps off the page in five short stories that excite, entertain and explore the human interest in conflict by writer Jason Mehmel. Paired up with artists Dale Berry, Rodolfo Buscaglia, Florence Chan, Rob Finlay, Nick Johnson Dan Petcu and letterer Ryan Ferrier (Tiger Lawyer, Brothers James) an eclectic collection of short stories featuring Kirby-esque gods, boxers from the Hudson’s Bay trading post, fencers of the martial way of sword fighting, power suit wearing, battle worn soldiers and ninjas all duke it out over the span of five pages each in this local collection of talent available at http://www.jasonmehmel.com/FIGHTCOMICS/ for a free read.
Turnbuckle justice displays a boxing match with a surprise around the corner as we watch the two contestants test their strength with each blow. Spectators cheer off in the background as their bloodlust and desire for carnage is satiated. The art handled by Nick Johnson was a personal favorite of mine with its cartoon charm and ruthless fisticuffs story.
Next up is a cosmic tale called the Courtroom of the Future Gods where characters inspired by Kirby’s Fourth World pass judgement and are punished accordingly for their crimes. The designs by Buscaglia have a terrific flare to them and the chaotic surroundings as captured in this snapshot of the life of an eternal is a particular achievement of the collection.
Destruction and mayhem come in the form of Modern Tactics from Rob Finlay as two weaponized suits battle amongst a few transients in an abandoned building. The machines lay their environment to waste in the proud tradition of Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots.
Counting on It with art by Florence Chan is an interesting match up as smoke rises around two emotional combatants. The memory of one fades while the other wallows in their own perpetual loop, holding close the faint tinges of regret.
Finally we get to see a rigorously layed out battle of blades between man and woman in Amore Bellum with illustrations by Dale Berry. The panel structure of this particular story is great fun to follow along with each swing of the sword.
A magnificent manga style front and back cover by Dan Petcu is a great image of a tire iron wielding man on a motorcycle as he burns across the pavement towards another rider, rapidly impending and violence ensuing.
Jason Mehmel scripts 5 very different looks at action comics and broadcasts the talent of 6 great artists in the anthology collection called Fight Comics! Again, you can get a free read of the book at www.fightcomics.ca or you can visit Amazon for print on demand copies at http://www.amazon.com/Fight-Comics-Stories-conflict-different/dp/1475099223 or of course hit up www.alphacomics.ca or Words and Pictures (Suite 6, 2610 Centre St NE, Calgary, AB T3K 2P7) to see if there are any copies left in stock.
Stay tuned for a potential return from Mehmel to the Fight Comics! platform with his second volume currently in the works.