Review: VEIL #1

Written by Greg Rucka
Art by Toni Fejzula
Published by Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: March 5, 2014

23944Acclaimed Eisner award winning writer Greg Rucka “unveils” a brand new series this week and he’s brought artist Toni Fejzula with him for under the guise of editor Scott Allie for Dark Horse Comics called Veil. Not much was solicited about this new series except that it would be a welcome addition to Dark Horse’s horror genre of comic books, and, since it’s become somewhat of a signature for Rucka, it would center on a female protagonist by the name of Veil.

Meet Veil, a young woman that awakens naked and underground in a subway station. Rats are abundant. Memory loss is evident. Foul play and the occult seems to be involved, and the young woman seems to have power beyond that of normal human beings. Oh, she also has a penchant for speaking rhymes in a delusional manner. As Veil emerges out into society, we are now on the journey of trying to discover why, whom, and what happened to her.

While the premise seems very familiar and atypical, writer Greg Rucka is clearly flexing different writing muscles for this series. His pacing is much more tempered than in his other comic book series by allowing the reader to marinate more into the setting. It takes almost seven pages for Veil to awake and emerge out of the subway station into society, but it never feels sluggish because as the character Veil becomes acclimated to her surroundings, so too does the reader as we carefully observe her realizations from panel to panel.

With a simple story guide to follow, Rucka dedicates more on describing details and scenarios to entice the reader. His dialogue is limited to the innocent, child-like rhyming that Veil speaks as she seemingly ignores any sort of formal societal structures of communication and the good samartianism of Dante, who comes to Veil’s aide as the city scumbags gawk and flock towards her unclothed body. There isn’t any spectacular wit or jokes in the dialogue, except in some of the rhyming tangents that Veil goes off on, and that’s fine. The dialogue still comes off as honest and doesn’t detract from enjoying the story.

The true star of Veil #1 is the artwork of Toni Fejzula. His composition and style in every panel commands your attention, if not for awe, or at least curiosity. The perspectives for each panel are intelligent and his ability to portray expressions are both haunting and genuine. He masterfully renders Veil with a creepy, doll-like expression as she speaks in rhymes and still able to carry visual emotions for the rest of the cast of characters in the book. His pages and layouts are beyond pretty and make an other-wise, typical amnesia story into something much, much more.

So far, this debut issue appropriately stokes enough curiousity to jump on board. Greg Rucka’s story is interesting enough to stoke the fire for horror fans and Toni Fejzula’s unconventional visual art style elevates your interest beyond what you may have expected.

The Verdict: 8.0/10


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