Posted: Tuesday, March 16, 2004
By: Darren

Cover of Barracudae Writer(s): John Ira Thomas
Artist(s): Carter Allen with Jeremy Smith (Guest inks)
Publishers: Candle Light Press
From: USA
Price: $9.95 (US), 7.50 pounds.

A strange man who disagrees with himself and has to strip naked to pee is on the trail of a serial murderer. When they finally meet it's not entirely clear which of them is more dangerous. Their extended discussion of theology might or might not mean something.

This book is made up of chapters in in the story of the strange man who comes to be known as Husband as he searches for a rapist and cat killer. Along the way Husband teams up with Mr Way, an equally creepy guy who seems to have a thing about keeping track of time.

Carter uses a variety of art styles to add to the spooky atmosphere of the stories. From angular illustrations to clay model photo montages with some shock-wave/flash looking computer created cartoons and rough sketch outlines. Jeremy comes on board for some inking with a lose superhero look. Some of the work goes a bit too far (noodle photo montage as a substitute for zip-a-tone anyone?) but it all manages to hold together.

John is an interesting writer, giving his characters dialogue that borders on riddles when they happen to speak at al. Conversations swing back and forward with all involved talking at cross purposes. The characters are very very strange people, the plot takes quite a few nasty turns, but the basic good verse evil idea is there... well maybe its not quite all bad verse very very evil.

This is a book that surprises, confounds, shocks and delights. Very original.

In a Word: Standout.

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