Sunday, July 3, 2022

Brendan McGinley:

Quisque Comoedum Est

Ben Templesmith shows off more than moody paintings and demonstrates a knack for the darkly funny in Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse.


Wormwood: Gentleman Corpse

Ben Templesmith’s progress as a comic illustrator since 30 Days of Night is apparent in this debut of his character Wormwood, an undead troubleshooter, but Templesmith also shows he’s a pretty good writer.

Wormwood and his mechanical drinking buddy, Mr. Pendulum, face off against fungal abominations at a strip joint for (and featuring) monsters. It appears that the maggot keeping court in his eye socket animates Wormwood, so he takes a fair amount of damage before vanquishing the unwelcome infestations possessing the joint’s patrons.

Templesmith defines panel actions clearly, and uses a warmer palette than one might be used to seeing from him. It’s a fun lark.








The Next

Every few years, DC puts out some amazing superhero book that’ll hit cult status and probably get canceled well after expectations, but well before its time. Major Bummer, Chase, Young Heroes in Love, Aztek… titles that all fell victim to a readership that by and large, has all the super-heroes it wants.

Welcome to that club, then, The Next, a cute, cerebral book written by Tad Williams and drawn by Dietrich Smith, and wish it longevity.

A group of extra-dimensional waifs on the run from their oppressive governing council, The Iron Ring, for the deadly crime of individual thought, chases their dog (“He’s actually not a dog, he’s a rehearsed concept – an algorithm with some free will…”) to Earth, saves a young lady named Monikka, in the process, binding themselves here and ripping a hole in time-space. “You are my friend now,” one clucks cheerily to her, “I will definitely give you this body when I’m done with it.”

Happy sailing, friends.



Brendan McGinley is a long-time writer for ComicBase. His comic favorites include anything featuring Grim Jack, Punisher, Guy Gardner, Green Lantern, or written buy Evan Dorkin, Grant Morrison, Alan Moore, Deadpool… and the list goes on. But he insists he is of discriminating tastes.

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