Anthology Project, The

Posted: Tuesday, September 14, 2004
By: Darren Schroeder

Cover of Anthology Project, The Writer(s): Jay Bonney, Michael McColm
Artist(s): Michael McColm, Daryl Walker, L. Horner, D Walker
Publishers: 430 Comics (Self Published)
From: UK
Price: £1(UK)

The folks at Insomniac Press and 430 Comics have collected up a small bunch of self-contained short comics and writings to intrigue the comic buying public.
The tone is serious, with meditations on war, life, death and a few other things as well.

The tales here met the structure of the short story that I recall from high school - a twist ending is essential. Jay does the writing of most of the stories, and he covers and interesting range of topics: the power of the so called insane, human progress, the fate of the foot soldier. The characters aren't given long introductions so they rely on stereotypes and convention. Still, their reactions are credible and the situations they find themselves in are fresh.

The group of artists lending their pens to the stories all do justice to the tales. Michael's work on the first story Mr Smith captures the grim intensity of an insane asylum, with jaunty panel layouts adding to the off-filter feel of the piece. His work on another story Dream of Lazarus sticks to a 9 panel layout, using strong shadowing effects to reflect the film noir elements of the story.

D. Walker has a more open art style with no no shading, just thin lines. The characters have an almost manga styling that might have been better suited to a more humorous tale than the war and suffering tale he has been given here.

This collection is an engaging read with inventive storytelling and attractive artwork. Well worth a look.

In a Word: Mortal.

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