"Sink #4" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by ComixTribe
Written by John Lees
Illustrated by Alex Cormack
Colored by Alex Cormack & Lisa Moore
2018, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on January 24th, 2018
What if the kids in Stand by Me didn't set out to look at a dead body...but to make one? That's the vibe I got from Sink #4. After a classmate goes missing, a few children head out to look for the legendary killer clowns that have been terrorizing Sinkhill. They are looking for one monster and find another one entirely.
Writer John Lees perfectly captures the essence of the early teenage years. These kids feel real and they're going through normal school-age stuff. They're friends and they poke fun at one another like any other group would do, although sometimes they go a bit too far. This realism makes the characters instantly sympathetic and relatable. It also makes what happens to them all the more tragic.
Before we get to that though, I want to take a moment to talk about the nightmare sequence that's shown early in the comic. Artist Alex Cormack has been killing it on this series, but this scene in particular really stands out. It's a simple setup that quickly turns into pure madness. One of the kids hears a noise and goes downstairs to investigate.
|Click image to enlarge|
The moment he steps out of the safety of his bedroom, you know that everything has gone horribly wrong. The panels are cloaked in a blood red hue. The scenery becomes increasingly erratic, as if the stairs and walls were drawn in anger. The images start to lose their form, like the comic is being shaken rapidly. This all builds to a terrifying monster reveal that is tough to look at for longer than a few seconds. Everything about this scene clicks. It's a quintessential horror scene and it's pulled off wonderfully.
From what I've learned about Sinkhill from reading this book, the events that transpire in this issue are not all that out of the ordinary. A group of kids could go out searching for some killer clowns, armed with knives, bats, and a bookbag full of bricks. Then they could find a grown man torturing another human being in a particularly gruesome manner. That could be an average Thursday. Sink #4 features the return of a fan-favorite character and he's here with a lesson for the young folk.
What you will notice with the latter portion of Sink #4 is the blood. There is so much of it. If this was colored by hand, Cormack and Lisa Moore might have run out of red ink. The blood coats everything, creating this blanket of gore on anyone it touches. You can see drops fly off as people gesture because they're just covered in it.
|Click images to enlarge|
Sink #4 shows what you might have to do in order to make it in this town. Even children aren't exempt from the violence and bloodshed that permeates through this area. They only have a very small amount of time to be innocent, then Sinkhill gets its claws into them and rips that away. You can see this transformation happen on the page as the kids go from wide-eyed naiveté to sheer brutality.
Sink never disappoints. It pulls no punches and always delivers a solid horror read. This issue touches upon some characters and concepts established in previous chapters, but doesn't dedicate the entire story to them. It just reminds you that all of this madness is set in the same small area, like Spider-Man showing up in an Iron Man comic because they both live in New York City. In this case, it's a van full of killer clowns and a group of school children. Pretty much the same thing, right?
If you want to try out Sink, you can read the comic for free by signing up for the newsletter. I assure you, it's well worth it.