Unearth #1 Review

Unearth #1 2nd printing cover

Unearth #1 Review
Image Comics
Written by Cullen Bunn and Kyle Strahm
Art by Baldemar Rivas
Letters by Crank!
32 pages $3.99

Solicit: SERIES PREMIERE! When a flesh-warping disease ravages a remote village in Mexico, a scientific task force travels to the inhospitable area to investigate the contamination. Tracing the source of the disease to a nearby cave system, the team discovers a bizarre, hostile ecosystem and a supernatural revelation from which they may never escape. This new subterranean nightmare is brought to you by writers CULLEN BUNN (REGRESSION) and KYLE STRAHM (SPREAD), and rising-star artist BALDEMAR RIVAS!

Suggested soundtrack: Lost Themes by John Carpenter

Basically, what you have here is two of the best body horror writers in comics teaming up to make the ultimate body horror title, and what we got is certainly disturbing.

From the first page, the design of this comic is just excellent, with Rivas cover with eye-popping colors and one of the main characters split in green flesh with a pink background and the other half in black and white x-ray vision and a gory red background.

Rivas’ art is at times almost comical and borrows from some of my favorite manga masters, but he excels at drawing the disfigured inflated bodies of the infected in this nightmare comic.

His style reminded me of manga masters like Katashahiro Otomo’s work on his legendary Akira, drawing the human form inflated to ridiculous nightmares circa John Carpenter’s remake of The Thing.

Bunn and Straham write a convincing story reminiscent of James Cameron’s Aliens, a team of military specialists and scientists are dropped into a situation they can’t possibly understand, and I have to wonder how they aren’t all going to die in the next issue.

The creative team does an excellent job building the dread of the story before we even get to the initial reveal of just how bad the situation actually is.

Unearth was brutal, feel bad comic booking that excels in its sense of hopeless dread. It’s the kind of book that spits in the face of titles like The Walking Dead and dares you to care about any of the characters. Sit back, put on your favorite funeral-doom record, and shiver while reading this new nightmare.

Rating:  BUY IT