Writer: Mat Johnson
Artist: Simon Gane
Review by: Bill Jones
Dark Rain is a New Orleans story, in that its fictional story takes place during the Hurricane Katrina disaster. Two ex-cons who meet at a halfway house in Houston try to rob a bank in New Orleans during the disaster, while everyone else is busy trying to survive. They get crossed up with a private military group called Dark Rain, looking out for its own interests during evacuation and cleanup, run into a pregnant woman looking for help out of town and a banker determined to protect his assets even amidst the chaos. It’s an interesting story taking place during a well-known event from recent memory. It’s also filled to the brim with commentary on different types of people and what they do under duress. Problem is, it’s ham-fisted, stating its each and every thought, leaving the reader to derive very little on his own from it, with stereotypical characters. The art is engaging, though, more so because of the choice to only use color for the water. But the panel construction presents nothing new.
Pros: Interesting fictionalization of a big American event. Captivating color scheme.
Cons: Ham-fisted messages. Stereotypical characters. Strange cover art. Predictable elements.
For more info, www.dccomics.com/vertigo
Pads & Panels received a copy of the book courtesy of the publisher for review purposes.