Written and co-created by Mike Garley
Art ad co-creation by Michael Lee-Graham
Letters and logo design by Michael Stock
35 pages – Full Colour – £3.00
The Book: Five kids wake up in an abandoned house. They don’t know why they’re there, how they got there, or whose blood they’re covered in…
Covered in blood, disorientated, and with no short-term memory, these five kids will need to work together to solve the mysteries of this hellish house, or this will be their final Halloween.
Our five survivors will have to work together to decipher the mysteries of the house and the role they play within it.
It soon becomes clear that everything isn’t what it seems and they’re involved in something bigger and darker than they feared. But despite this they still seem somewhat prepared, which only adds to the tension…
The Preview: This is the new Kickstarter from Mike Garley. He is a pro at this game now and you now know, and expect, his books to be polished, great reads and out on time (always an important factor especially on this project since, to complicate matters, he will be releasing this as a digital download as soon as the terror of Halloween hits us later this month.
I’ve been sent the first ten pages of the final 35 – and after having tore through them this morning, am excited for the prospect of the rest of the comic. It sets up fast and brutally. The blood drenched art leaves you with no doubt about what you are letting yourself in for with this suburban supernatural horror story. Nothing here thankfully exhibits the cliche of ‘Hidden in the Shadows’, it is all full on, all the time, in your face with a baseball bat swinging.
I am a big horror fan. I have been since the 1970s and am always worried that this genre I love is becoming over sterilised and formulaic. I yearn for the days that pals would get together and produce something so truly horrific you wondered as you watched what truly twisted individuals created its storyline and effects. I get the sense of this from the three Michaels at work here on this project. There seems to be no holding back and I sense that the creators are egging each other on….’More blood’ I hear one of them shout!
Good horror works against the rules of fiction. There is a clear adversarial aspect to the relationship of the writer and the reader. In horror you actively distrust the creators, the dynamics of this style of writing almost insist on this style. You don’t want cosy settings or happy endings and as you sit in that easy chair reading under the glow of the midnight lamp you want the feeling that something or someone will creep up behind you and slit your throat. That lack of trust and wariness is evident here in Our Final Halloween.
Who do you trust from the cast? The fact that you flip-flop between trust and suspicion of what every player is doing and what their intentions could be is an example of some good writing. I cant wait to see where it goes. I suspect that there are a few more twists waiting in those puddles of blood and under the floorboards.
The art has a great quality of immediateness and wide-eyed drama. Michael Lee-Graham uses a calculated spread of colour in his use of a minimal palette (although I can only guess how many times he had to head back into the paint shop for more red?). The players are all different and easy to identify even in this short ten page preview that I was sent. None of them identify as a hero or villain by design seemingly, always a great approach. You can also sense the layout of this suburban home and you mentally prepare escape routes as you search the panels.
So head over to the above link and pledge before the month runs out…
It’s also cool to see that this project will offer a soundtrack as part of the £5 pledge level. That’s a great little touch. Plus, additional bonus art is being offered by incredible creators such as Sam Beck, Kate Brown, Meaghan Carter and Steve White.
• Follow the artist Michael Lee-Graham on Twitter @mikeleegraham
• Find out more about the lettering and logo design by going to Mr Stock’s website at www.michaelstock.co.uk