"The Crow: Memento Mori #1" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by IDW Publishing
Written by Roberto Recchioni and Matteo Scalera
Illustrated by Werther Dell'Edera and Matteo Scalera
Colored by Giovanna Niro and Moreno Dinisio
2018, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on March 28th, 2018
The Crow returns! Run down in a terrorist attack in the streets of Rome, altar boy David has returned to seek vengeance on those that killed him and his girlfriend. The Crow is just as brutal as ever, stalking his killers and delivering swift retribution.
David looks pretty awesome as the Crow. Artist Werther Dell'Edera and colorist Giovanna Niro create a dark visage looming above the city. Rain pours down around him as he stands atop a statue, shrouded in darkness. His pale body contrasts nicely with the black marks he spreads across his face in the shape of the bird. His eyes stare blankly ahead without emotion.
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Excitement builds as David gets closer to his prey. There are some amazing shots showing him leaping across rooftops with lightning coming down behind him in the distance. A crow flies above him like a warning to all those that might catch a glimpse of this undead vigilante.
The action in The Crow: Memento Mori is top notch. Dell'Edera has a real talent for these sequences, making some interesting shots. He incorporates the sound effects too, making the “BRAKKA” of the gun part of the image with its own shadow. It gives weight to the bullets flying through the air and shows how David nimbly jumps around them.
The violence is brutal with David showing no mercy to his killers. Each is hurt more than the last in increasingly horrific ways. You can feel the rage inside him as he slowly lets it out with each blow.
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While all this looks awesome, David's internal narration is a little too cool for school. He sounds like one of the characters from The Boondock Saints, about to deliver some tough guy vengeance on the bad guys. It's also interspersed with verses from the Bible in a vain attempt to justify his actions. It all feels very goth, which is fitting considering this is the Crow we're talking about.
Matteo Scalera writes and draws a backup story in this issue called “Buried Virtue” following a Crow from an earlier time. It's a beautifully illustrated short that deals with the idea of revenge in a very cool way. Color is sparse, but meaningful. Colorist Moreno Dinisio did a great job bringing out important pieces from the grey scale images.
The Crow: Memento Mori delivers a powerful return for the concept. It's one that can work very well and this new iteration deals with the fallout of attacks we've seen all too often in today's headlines. With all the attacks David unleashes in this debut issue, I have to wonder where he can go next.