The Crow: Hark the Herald

You know, I’m not really familiar with The Crow as a franchise. I own a trade collection of the original James O’Barr comics that I bought around the time that the movie came out in 1994 and still own my VHS copy of the film. Other than listening to my college roommate’s copy of the soundtracks to that movie and The Crow: City of Angels (Hole’s cover of “Gold Dust Woman” is outstanding, btw), I never ventured beyond what was in my house, even though I know there’s been quite a bit in the last nearly 30 years. But this one-shot from IDW was in a quarter bin recently and the cover looked interesting enough for me to grab it. Plus, it’s written by Tim Seeley, who did Image’s Revival, an excellent series that I wrote about a few months ago.

The premise of this book, which has art by Meredith Laxton, is that a woman named Brandi and her father are out for a hunting trip around Christmastime and run afoul of a group of people in a bar. That group is no ordinary group–they’re all hitmen who get together in a cabin in the woods every December to pretend they are normal and enjoy Christmas. And things would have gone well if one of them, Larry, hadn’t been so insulted by a comment that Brandi’s dad made that he went and killed both of them. Now, a year later, Brandi has returned and is enacting revenge.

This was a solid read. Like I said, I really liked Revival, and Seeley is bringing the same sort of feel to this that he did to that series, setting us in the snowy woods of the north. The concept that a group of killers get together for a nice old-fashioned Christmas is clever, and having Brandi hunt them reminded me of Surviving the Game, a great “Forgotten Film” starring Ice-T and Rutger Hauer.

Of course, like the original Crow, this is about seeking vengeance and it does tip into slasher territory here and there. But I’m not going to fault the comic for that, especially considering how Seeley ends the story and allows Brandi to find her peace.

This might be in a cheap bin somewhere if you can find it. Like I said, I enjoyed it but will probably be giving it away because while it’s a solid one-off, it’s definitely just a “reader.”

Keep, Sell, Donate, or Trash?

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