REVIEW: Intersect #1 – Avant Garde, Not for the Plebeians

REVIEW: Intersect #1 - Avant Garde, Not for the Plebeians
Writer: Ray Fawkes
Artist: Ray Fawkes
Image Comics

There is a little bone in my body that tingles when I see a comic written and drawn by the same artist. Some of the greatest creations in our medium have come from that singular unity of vision. Somehow, knowing that everything on the page came from one person suggests that nothing has been lost from the creator’s imagination down the line, to me, the ultimate viewer. The problem with Intersect is that unless I was in the exact same room with Ray Fawkes, I doubt I would understand what the hell is going on in this comic.

This is generally the part of the review where I summarize the plot of the comic, while avoiding as many spoilers as I can. But honestly I can’t even decide what the plot is or what would constitute a spoiler. Can I spoil something if it’s my half-assed guess as to what is actually happening? I’ll leave that to the philosophers. All I can say is that it’s apparently a story about a monster chasing two or more people. Each of these people seems to have another person inside them who they switch back and forth between and um…it’s all very symbolic for…stuff.

Ray Fawkes is a talented writer who has worked with DC and written/drawn the Eisner nominated One Soul. I don’t want to paint him as naive or anything other than a talented artist because I admire the man and appreciate how much he pushes his artwork. That being said, the writing in this story makes no attempt to show the reader what is going on. I don’t have a feel for the characters, conflict or setting. The story is peppered with first person narration that doesn’t explain anything and generally feels like bad poetry. The writing frequently switches from lofty, poetic prose to crass profanities in an attempt to ground the writing, but it can’t because there’s nothing to hold onto in this story.

Even the artwork is airy and insubstantial. Most of the characters feel half finished, like the concept sketches before the inking is done. Colors spark from every direction, trying to evoke emotion rather than convey a sense of place. Even the paneling feels awkward and meaningless, different without a sense of purpose. I get the feeling like Ray bit off more than he could chew, trying to pour too much of himself into one piece of art. I mean the lettering, the lettering in this comic is terrible. Would it have too much to ask someone else to step in and help convey something to the reader or would that have sacrificed too much of the original vision?