Brontes, the: Infernal Angria #1 (of 3)

Posted: Tuesday, September 6, 2005
By: Darren Schroeder

Cover of Brontes, the: Infernal Angria #1 (of 3) Creator(s): Craig McKenney and Rich Geary
Publishers: Headless Shakespeare Press
From: USA

An old man dies, watched over by a gruff gentleman who barks at him, then orders the house sold and all the deceased's papers destroyed soon after. We then jump back 36 years to a house full of children; specifically the Bronte family, who have to deal with the death of a young girl. The remaining siblings soon move on to childhood pursuits. One day while drawing on the walls of their play room they discover something magical...

Creating the atmosphere of a classic childrens' story very quickly, this book deals with characters escaping the harsh reality of life and the strict authority of adults into a world of fantasy which contains its own dangers. Such a structure means readers very quickly will start making comparisons with stories they already know. Chronicles of Nadia sprang to mid immediately, and The Phoenix and the Carpet. Pitting itself against such competition could be a stabling block, but the creative team create a story that draws the reader into events very quickly, and leaves them wanting more at the end of the first issue.

The children don't have much personality so far. The only way to tell them apart is their clothing. The young lad Branwell acts as the leader of the group without showing much initiative. He tells the others to do things, and they do it. He seems to know more about events so far than he is letting on, but some back story to develop his leader ship role would have helped.

Rick Geary's artwork is a huge asset to the comic. He creates a wonderfully accessible Romantic Era world with costumes and settings that look enchanting and slightly grim at the same time. The style suits a book aimed at children while offering many pleasures for adults.

Writing and art combine to draw the reader into the story, there are no rough edges to distract or annoy. Its a comic that hides its polish behind a veil of simplicity.

In a Word: Belletristic.

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