Death Walks The Streets #0 (The Scream Factory – Zahn / Brezinski / Balbi / Silva / Tartaglia)
A prequel and extension of the upcoming feature film, DEATH WALKS THE STREETS kicks off in a new comic book series published by THE SCREAM FACTORY. Set three years before DWTS I, an Organization Soldier named Michael Labou leads a crew that includes his longtime friends Danielle and Malcolm. Charged with tracking down and capturing a person wanted by The Organization, it’s anything but business as usual on the streets of New Marshall.
It was about a year ago that I came across what is now the defunct Fangoria Comics. And here is what I wrote about them, and I still stand by every word. The stories were fresh, scary and thoughtful… a perfect trilogy for a horror book. Most of the talent involved there has moved to The Scream Factory and they have picked up the baton where Fangoria dropped it and are continuing the race towards a modern “Golden Era” of horror writing and comics.
Thepullbox had the privilege of getting to talk to several members of The Scream Factory and get a vibe on what is happening right now and where this “Renaissance” company will be taking their following of story-hungry readers. Great guys, tons of information, fantastic interviews… but all saved for another day, because this post is about Death Walks The Streets (DWTS), which will possibly define a new sub-genre of horror.
DWTS is a self-proclaimed combination of gritty crime and horror. It fits the bill entirely and then some. The story follows a team of three bounty hunters who at the very least are giving second thoughts to their choice in lifestyle. But there are really no other good choices when everything in the city is controlled by the mob and you are good at what you do. The story mixes not only the protagonists’s own struggle with personal morality, but also the generational shift in power of the organized crime structure and the return of a supernatural enemy of some of the organization’s patriarchs. This is a fantastic issue #0, it sucks the reader in and makes him wants more, or at the very least issue #1 right now. I would agree DWTS is a combination of crime and horror, but at least as far as this issue is concerned, it also fits into the action / adventure genre with awesome fight scenes galore! The well thought out brings DWTS way out of the horror stereotype zone.
The art by Guilherme Balbi is very good, but isn’t quite what someone who think of when they go to a “horror” comic. It’s dark inks, untraditional lay-out and bright colors presents itself as more of a mainstream book and less of an indie, in particular an indie horror. And I personally think that is a good thing. Balvi’s accessible pencils only further DWTS’s ability to show the average reader that horror does not have to be equated with plotless splatter.
After taking a look at DWTS, it is evident that The Scream Factory has continued the fight to break the horror genre out of the “bucket o’ blood – gore is more important than story” place that the majority of the writers have been in for the last few decades. Kudos to them and I look forward to them leading the charge, in all types of medias, towards that modern “Golden Era” of horror!
Issue Grade: A