Review Shooter: Baltimore The Curse Bells 3
Artist: Ben Stenbeck (Review by Ryan Hancock)Â
Let me start off by saying, I haveÂ never read anything from Dark Horse Comics. However, after readingÂ the latest issue of Baltimore Curse Bells (coming out Wednesday), IÂ may need to add a few to my pull list.
In this five part mini series, we haveÂ a tale full of vampires, cults, God and death. It also takes placeÂ during the time of Lord Baltimore, and artist Ben Stenbeck portraysÂ the time period perfectly with his art. The whole comic is filledÂ with a grey and black background, which helps to add to the allure ofÂ the story. Although most of the pages are incredibly dark, the panelsÂ that really explode off the pages are the ones full of blood. TheÂ blood is so red that it immediately catches your eye and only adds toÂ the horror.
The dialogue created by writers MikeÂ Mignola and Christopher Gordon is both believable and haunting. ThereÂ is one scene in particular, near the climax of this issue, that leftÂ me with chills. I won’t spoil it, but one of the lines stuck with me.Â “You have been blooded by the devil’s touch, and you must beÂ purified.” This encompasses the overall ambiance of the plot, asÂ there are aspects of religion as well as pure horror.
Now, this is the 3rd issueÂ in a 5-issue series, so there were some points where I was confusedÂ as to who the characters were and what their motivations were, but itÂ really didn’t ruin the plot for me. I was still able to enjoy everyÂ page without any problems. In addition, this issue was so good thatÂ it’s convinced me to check out the first two issues of this series asÂ well.
Overall, I really loved this issue andÂ I’ve become enthralled with this world that the writers have created.Â It’s frightening, dark, historical, but it’s that element of mystiqueÂ that really attracts me to this comic book. A world of vampiric nunsÂ and an insane occultist may not be your cup of tea, and I didn’tÂ think it was going to be my style either. However, I was completelyÂ engaged by the turn of the 5th page. It’s different,Â there’s nothing like it in your local comic book shop right now. So,Â if you’re getting tired of the typical superhero comic, give this aÂ try and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it as much as I did.
New Reader Accessibility: 3 — BeingÂ the 3rd issue of the series, there will be somethingÂ missing in the continuity from previous issues, but you can stillÂ enjoy and understand this issue without reading the first issues.
Recommendation: Buy it — A reallyÂ interesting story with many horrifying scenes. Give this issue a tryÂ and if you like it, buy the first two issues of the series as well.