In Preview – ‘Murder – Volume Two’ from John Tucker.

(Cover and all art used for preview purposes only).

Murder – Volume Two.

Created by John Tucker.

A6 – 40 pages – £3 (incl. postage in the UK).

Kickstarter launches 21/8/2021 – runs for one week only!

The Preview – Murder can happen in many and varied ways. In a shoot out between gangsters, in a dark wood late at night, even on the dance floor. However, the Modus Operandi of what happens in a comic by John Tucker is never in the least bit expected. In this new volume of Murder he subverts our understanding of the everyday and adds a dose of the mystical. HE IS ALSO LYING TO YOU!

(I refuse to reveal the source of this lie as he has been kind enough to send me a free comic!)

This is a 40 page comic that is split into two stories. First up is the modern quasi-mystical folk tale of a pilgrimage to the scene of an all-knowing talking rock face called Bruce. Once a year on the 18th of May this stone face carved into the side of a cliff will answer four questions.

Just a single question has been eating away at our hero. He has put the necessary study in to get to this remote and secret spot, camped out and now stands a chance of asking his question. He even brought along a photograph to help Bruce out and clarify the exact nature of his quest. What will he ask? I’ll leave that to you to find out. But knowing this creator you might guess it won’t be anything expected.

This is probably my personal favourite of the two stories. It seems to be more personal than the second – but your mileage may vary.

The second story is called ‘Buddy Holly‘ and is an interesting take at what happened to the plane crash that killed this musical legend and others. When I say interesting perhaps what I mean to say is wholly unexpected, downright strange, the product of too much cheese before bed and possibly of a narrative structure the likes of which we haven’t seen since Frank Zappa told his followers of ancient eskimo legends.

Back the Kickstarter and find out you tight-asses!

I cannot and will not spoil.

And there sits the problem of previewing/reviewing a John Tucker comic. The dreaded spoil! I cannot give away what happens as it is part and parcel of the whole package. The stories come at the reader with the confidence of a tall tale told at 2am in a back street boozer lock-in. They refuse to conform to the clichés of storytelling we see elsewhere/everywhere. When I read his comics I hear his Welsh lilt narrating and explaining. His commentary talks to you as if this is the most normal story you’ll hear but then you realise that you are joining in with the with the joke and he is carrying you along to the edge of the story’s cliff. There is always a twist, an angle, an approach that you don’t see coming. But this turnabout is completed with a now iconically idiosyncratic voice that each installment of his comic (or his podcast) transmits straight at you.

The art is straightforward but with a recognisable wink at the reader. His stories and single images often remind me of the illustrated gags in something like the New Yorker Magazine. Not unlike something by Joe Dator, Emily Flake, or even at times a less jumbled George Booth. The images add intrinsically to the mystery. For example, how could this average looking dude be involved with a talking statue? He just looks like another member of the Caravan and Hiking Society!

I had another blast reading this comic and it’s another great addition to the growing stack of multi-media content that Mr. Tucker creates. It’s not a long read but at the price it is total value for money. As soon as the link for the Kickstarter drops I’ll add it below. I’ll be pledging for a physical copy. Get on it quick as it has a limited window of availability.

It left me with one question…

What is a murder anyway?

Highly recommended (not murder – that is frowned upon).

John is an independent writer and illustrator from Wales. He has created and published several comics as well as two series of the slice-of-life absurdist comedy podcast ‘This Foul Earth’.

For more information you can head over to John’s website here and follow him on Twitter right here.

You can catch up with the first two seasons of his podcast ‘This Foul Earth’ right here.

Many thanks for reading.

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