"Self Storage #6" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by 451 Media
Written by Clay McLeod Chapman
Illustrated by Matt Timson
2016, 36 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on July 27th, 2016
Chris Smith bought the contents of a storage unit sight unseen only to find a naked undead woman named Jessica inside. For some reason, he kind of fell in love with her and now he's responsible for several deaths to keep her fed. He's learned the truth of Jessica's past and how she ended up in the container, but at the cost of just about everything else in his life.
It's tough to say when Self Storage spiraled out of interesting territory and ended up in the land of weird. The relationship between Chris and Jessica is unusual and unlikely. Sure, it's easy to feel sorry for the girl when she's cowering naked in the dark, but after she turns someone into a zombie, maybe it's time to rethink asking her out. Chris has screwed up almost everything he's touched, so maybe this was the one thing he was hoping would turn it all around. He doesn't seem to care much about anything else.
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Although she barely says anything, Jessica is the most interesting character in the book. She's freakishly strong and shows it by ripping a man's jaw clean off his face in one fluid motion. Artist Matt Timson delivers some dynamite gore. The look of abject terror on the man's face is horrifying. He can't comprehend what just happened as his teeth clatter somewhere around his chest, mouth extended in an almost cartoonish expression of shock.
The second half wraps up the overall arc, which is the best part of the series. It certainly provides a more compelling story than a loser finding a zombie in a storage unit. It's something that I'm surprised we haven't seen in more stories of the undead, and one I hoped was explored further. Unfortunately, it's squandered by the final few pages, closing the door on that particular option and opening things up to a larger, more generic zombie tale.
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Self Storage is a zombie gorefest without a solid story to back it up. The characters are superficial and unsympathetic, which makes it difficult to become invested in their lives. The one saving grace is Matt Timson's artwork, which delivers horror on every level. There is a chilling sequence of panels where a character silently reaches up, grabs a lightbulb hanging from the ceiling and crushes it in his hands, plunging the area into darkness. This definitely works with the aforementioned gore, but didn't help on the story front.