Comic Review: Everything #1 (Dark Horse)

Everything #1, from Dark Horse’s Berger Books, is well, almost everything. But is it enough to make us purchase it at retail? This story, simply put, is about life in […]

Everything #1, from Dark Horse’s Berger Books, is well, almost everything. But is it enough to make us purchase it at retail?

This story, simply put, is about life in a small Michigan US town named Holland. It’s 1980. The economy is depressed, the shopping mall has shut down, and people are not coping well. Along comes ‘Everything’, a new big box store, and they are hiring! But something is ‘off’.

Written by Christopher Cantwell, the book is illustrated by I.N.J. Culbard, a British artist and animator.

The story is more complex in its telling than it needs to be, unfortunately. Wordless panels make us decipher what’s going on. Narrative jumps around in time, so we are a bit disoriented. Did this just happen, is it a flashback; do I need a shot of Vodka and raw egg? But finally, things settle down. We meet the characters, all revolving around the arrival of the new store. We like the people! There are some haunting happenings, and “EVERYTHING” is certainly NOT okay with the arrival of the new store. Perhaps it is a shot in the arm for Hollanders, fresh blood and all that, but at what price? More costly than retail!

The artwork in Everything is superb. Culbard treads the fine line between realism and spooky image exaggeration. Cantwell and Culbard combine to elongate and truncate time, making for more impact when things pay off. It’s effective when it’s handled well. The colouring is atmospheric and more than usually vivid, a rich and accurate colour palette.

This title might catch fire with issue 2, now that we have attended its Grand Opening. There’s a shopper’s preview of issue 2 included as a backup, along with an explanation/editorial briefing from Christopher Cantwell.

Dark Horse, Everything #1, $3.99 for 25 pages of content, Rated Mature (violence and horror)

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!!