Comic Review: Lazaretto SC (BOOM! Studios)

Feeling good? Healthy? Ready for a gut-wrenching graphic novel about sickness? Good for you! Step up, roll up your sleeve and get ready for Lazaretto, from BOOM!. Lazaretto has been […]

Feeling good? Healthy? Ready for a gut-wrenching graphic novel about sickness? Good for you! Step up, roll up your sleeve and get ready for Lazaretto, from BOOM!.

Lazaretto has been described as “Animal House meets Lord of the Flies”, but that could be a bit misleading. How about Walking Dead, coupled with Saw, or other sadistic films? This trade collects issues 1-5 of the BOOM miniseries of the same name.

It all starts at the beginning of the school year, at Yersin University. It seems there’s a ‘canine flu’ going around. Highly contagious. Well, from day one, all hell breaks loose. People are barking mad within hours, coughing up blood, and puking great streams of green vomit.

Writer Clay McLeod Chapman and illustrator Jey Levang don’t pull any punches, and I mean that literally. There’s a Darwinism at work here on Yersin campus, where the freshmen and freshwomen (?) are considered fair game for hostility, bullying, and predatory behaviour. Fresh meat! It’s all considered fair game here, especially when you’re trapped inside the quarantine zone.

Unsettling, intense, nauseating, and ultimately “captivating”, Lazaretto spins its web-wide and well. But you need to be tough, with a strong will to withstand the full graphic wave of page after page of vividly rendered students, retching, turning into savages, and wreaking havoc all around. It’s colourful, this technocolour yawning of emotion, hate, and puke, all spilling onto everything.

To survive an onslaught like this, you need a friend. WIth the right friend, you have two hopes of survival: a fat chance, and a slim chance.

BOOM Lazaretto, $16.99 for 132 pages. Mature readers: violence and intense scenes.

Alan Spinney

About Alan Spinney

After a career of graphic design, art direction and copywriting, I still have a passion for words and pictures. I love it when a comic book comes together; the story is tight, and the drawings lead me forward. Art with words... the toughest storytelling technique to get right. Was this comic book worth your money? Let's see!!