Digital Visions #4 Review

This is another comic I’ve been sitting on for far too long, so it’s about time I mention it. Anthology comics are rare these days, although it’s great to see Dark Horse Presents back on the shelves, but indie books like these are are a good way to view some up and coming talents. From Visionary Comics, the fourth issue is out now and is free on Wowio. Yep, free.

The first of the three stories here is from Sam Johnson and Brunio Letizia. Entitled Voodoo Trespass, it follows Cabra Cini, who is a “Voodoo Junkie Hitwoman.”What a combo. Cabra’s latest case involves a dopey young man who killed his girlfriend while the pair were playing vampires. He took neck biting too far and ended up a murderer. Now the victim’s parents want revenge. We soon learn that Cabra swapped her cocaine addiction for voodoo and over the years has become rather adept, using “The Infinity” to teleport, which she does so to hunt down the vamp lover/ killer Tom Spelling.

On the way however, she runs into The Rook, the guardian of this secret dimension, as well as her abusive ex-boyfriend (who claims he’s currently in a coma in our world). With a brief battle and a hasty escape, Cabra meets Tom, and that’s where the story ends.

Johnson has done well to set up all that we need to know about the titular character in the first few pages. With her tough exterior , yet troubled past, and hints at a larger mythology, Cabra’s adventures are off to an intriguing start. Leitizi’a art is simple, but shows promise and the bold colour choices work well, especially when the black magic begins.

Gangland Avalon also mixes magic with action, and although this is the second part of the story, the opening page brings the reader up to speed. In short, a recent gathering of mob families ended badly, with main character “Stab Happy” Pelago earning his name. His narration guides us through the set up, with several characters (all of whom are tough killers), though it appears the action will kick in in the next instalment, with some discussion and a poisoning occuring in a restaurant making up the bulk of the story here. Writer A. David Lewis is perhaps the best known creator in this anthology, and his streamlined work with Michael Angelo Lee generates an interesting tale, with the focus on the gangster elements rather than the use of magic.

Finally, Deity: The Darkness and the Light centres on young blonde Jamie and her recent discovery that she’s a goddess and an alien race known as Ma’Shiva are trying to kill her. Thankfully, she has three protectors, but isn’t taking the threat seriously. There’s a lot of expository narration, from Jamie and her immense trust in herself (which you know can’t end well), the alien Valmek as he approaches his Lord Ogden and also Jamie’s boyfriend Zig. The script, dialogue and art all have a mid-90s approach that doesn’t scream originality and seems unnecessarily wordy. With a greater focus on action and some surprising character developments, creators Karl Altstaetter and Robert Lapton could be on to something.