Review – Bone Parish Vol. 1 (Boom! Studios)

Bone Parish Vol. 1 Is Ready to Take Over Your Bookshelves

Bone Parish Vol. 1 is a thrilling new story about crime, horror, and drugs. But it’s more disturbing than you could ever imagine. It’s been described as a necromancer horror series, and there isn’t a more accurate description out there.

The series follows one family as they create and perfect a new drug to sell on the streets. Unfortunately, the key ingredient is unique and more than a little bit horrifying. Together they’ll have to face off against others than want a share in the business, all while dealing with some disturbing family issues.

Writing

Bone Parish comes from the mind of Cullen Bunn, and if I wasn’t so enthralled with the plot, I’d be asking some questions. The series is dark and horrifying, but it also has many other elements to keep the series going.

Strong themes are running through the undercurrent of this series; trying to keep the business within the family, dominance struggles, guilt, loss, grief, they all came along for the ride in Bone Parish.

I’ve seen series that tried to hit this balance between fascination and horror. But I’ve never seen one that hit it so dead-on before. The tones of this series make it worth reading. The plot itself is a strong one, with multiple subplots to carry things along.

I went into this volume not knowing what to expect, but I ended up being blown away by the intensity of it all. It was bone-chilling and subtle and not afraid to explore the darker themes of family loyalty and drug running.

Art

Bone Parish Vol. 1 is visually striking. Its darker color palette perfectly matches the darker tones of the series. The cover images and the introduction panels, in particular, are eye-catching. Jones Scharf was the illustrator for the series, while Alex Guimaraes provided the coloring.

Together these two manage to capture the story being told. Everything from the more obvious notes, such as the story’s tone, to the more subtle ones. Each character introduced has their own personal plot, and the artists managed to weave in some iconic symbolism whenever possible to really pull it all together.

There were a lot of clear influences in the artwork here. You can see elements of folklore strewn about, and it has a grounding effect on the series. It makes the world, and thus the characters and plot, feel more real.

The artists had to find a clever way of showing us different…side effects of the drug. Some of them were obvious, but others had to be more subtle. The plot needed to be able to surprise us at points, so that balance was vital. The solution they came up with was creative, and I think, quite effective.

Conclusion

Bone Parish Vol. 1 is a strong introduction to the series. It’ll leave you chilled to the bone and wishing for more. This may be a series that, on the outside, looks like it’ll only run for a short time, but I think it has the potential to become something more.

This series was unlike anything I had ever read before. It was uncommon and had perfectly balanced tones of horror to carry the series along. Knowing what was going on behind the scenes only added to the weight of the series. This is a series worth checking out and following.

This review was originally written for Word of the Nerd, but has been ported over to Quirky Cat’s Fat Stacks now that the site has shut down.

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