Strangehaven Volume 1 – Arcadia & Strangehaven Volume 2 – Brotherhood.
Created by Gary Spencer Millidge.
On Episode 69 of the Never Iron Anything Comics Review Podcast Tony is joined by regular co-host and comics historian Richard Sheaf to discuss the first two volumes of Strangehaven by Gary Spencer Millidge.
There is much to discuss. The story opens with Alex, freshly divorced and on a trip in his sports car. He takes a turn in the road and lands in Strangehaven. A small village that doesn’t appear on any maps. He swerves to avoid a beautiful woman in the road and wakes up day day later in a local Bed and Breakfast with a Doctor looking at him.
Strangehaven is no normal village. It is full of interesting and mysterious characters. A deadly and magical tribesman who has escaped from South America now runs the newsagent. A man who never takes his sunglasses off and claims to be an alien from the planet ‘Nimoy’. There’s even a secret order that’s like a mix between the masons and the Klu Klux Klan who may be more than it at first seems. Even the local police officer has a habit of stealing DNA from the local women.
After Tony and Rich talk about how they discovered the series they delve further into the characters and storylines. A book that is as much a soap opera as it is a folk horror/mystery. The lives of the people in Strangehaven intertwine and complications emerge. Not just romantic and social but on occasion deadly. Whilst Alex, the stranger new in town, is the reader’s entry point you begin to follow the lives of the other cast members with as much interest.
The boys also discuss the art style and what Dave Sim describes as ‘Photo Realistic’. Is that style too realistic? Is it dependant on the acting abilities of those modelling for the panels? How does the art compare to the plotting and scripting? Is the lettering a little too crammed into the balloons? Was the underwear issue a little too much? Would you turn down a naked lady called Janey when she offered sex? You’ll have to listen to find out.
Warren Ellis, Dave Sim and Bryan Talbot are fans and so am I. This is a series that you really should give a go. It is unlike anything else out there.
In fact I’m such a fan that I bought a page.
Don’t forget that you can listen to this episode as well as sixty-eight others. They are all on the home page of this very site right here.
Many thanks for listening.