I believe fellow crusader David Jetter said it best when he said, “an anthology book about Dia de los Muertos? That has a hook to it,” in his review of the first issue of Dia de los Muertos (which you can read here).
I have always been a fan of the Mexican festival Dia De Los Muertos, and while I am not of Mexican descent, I felt right at home reading this book. With each story revolving around the Mexican holiday of the dead, one can’t help but want to go into mommy’s room, borrow her make up and spruce up a little. No? Just me? Okay then.
The cover art alone intrigued me and, if you’re okay with judging a book by its cover, then this is the book for you. Featuring three separate stories, Riley Rossmo’s artwork was just unbelievably stunning. Riley’s art had me glued to each and every page and he switched up the style for each story to the point where it felt as if each one was done by a different artist, which simply amazed me. The colors and penciling work very well with the writing.
The first of the three stories feature writer Joshua Williamson, who penned a very unique story about a man searching for a woman that sucked me in until I couldn’t help but wonder why he was searching for this woman and speculate what would happen next. I was thrown for a loop with the ending when nothing turned out to be how I expected it to be. This was the strongest story of the three, because the twist at the ending was so unexpected I had to double take the page a couple of times just to see if what I read actually happened.
The second of the three stories felt as if I were being lectured to with the overall lesson to learn being, “lying to yourself will not cover up your actions.” The artwork Rossmo uses for this story was simplistic, cartoony, and reminiscent of Tin Tin, which I feel fits well, for the most part, with the story Kurtis J. Wiebe crafted. Kurtis tells a tale of a forgotten kid and a policeman’s actions that lead one of the two towards a dire consequence. I didn’t enjoy this story as much as the first one because while the art was good, I just feel like it didn’t sync up to emotional ending of the story.
The third story, however, quickly won me back. In this story, I was hit with a Robert Rodriguez From Dusk Till Dawn vibe because you have two dirt bags who are up to no good and have to deal with supernatural occurrences. The writer Jeff Mariotte began this story with two brothers, who are talking about making it big, driving a car until they come face to face with something they could never have expected. Riley’s art was more colorful and not at all cartoony as with the previous one, which compelled me to read more. This story was more enjoyable for me because the ending stirred up childhood memories of putting my hand in the cookie jar, getting caught, and having to make up for my actions.
This was a really good book and I can’t wait to pick up the third issue. I mean, why wouldn’t I want to pick it up? The art is great and the stories are really entertaining. Plus, I’m dying to see how much further Riley Rossmo is gonna push himself with the art and what writers are going to be featured. This is a limited series that is definitely worth getting.