Image comics has been pumping out great content all year long and seeing a renaissance in sales and popularity. Big 2 creators are living out their creator-owned dreams within the Image brand and we have seen some really excellent and innovative work coming from them. Even in all of the hype of The Walking Dead, the bright glitz of titles like Hell Yeah, the sci-fi craziness of Prophet, and the dark undertones of Harvest, one story that caught me off guard and held me for 5 issues was Dancer.
Dancer is the story of a sniper, his girlfriend, and the man trying to kill him. The story is not complex. It wasn’t overly hyped. It wasn’t super innovative. It was just solid. The action and emotions are really fleshed out on the page and the slow pacing allows for a lot of space. It has almost a real-time effect and makes the way that the story unfolds very realistic.
I’ve alluded to it before, but the art in this is wonderful and Nic Klein achieved a realism that I was not expecting. The emotions conveyed through character archetypes and played out plot lines, may not have been compelling, but when paired with Klein’s art, feels successful. The story isn’t bad, but it’s a little Enemy At The Gates meets Bourne identity. This wouldn’t be a problem except for the fact that this is the exact same pitch that I would give you for “Who Is Jake Ellis,” which is Nathan Edmondson’s other popular series.
If I were to be positive, I would say that it is a safe and well tested story that holds up with beautiful art. If I were to be critical, I would say that it is too safe a story with exquisite art that saves it from being bland. Given all of this, I still think that it’s worth a read especially if you like this secret agent kind of thing or even if you are looking for a change of pace from the spandex crowd. It might be hard to find this in issues at stores as it was selling out, but you can purchase it digitally at Graphicly.com for $1.99 an issue.
~ Scott Deaux ~