Comic Review: Frank On The Farm #1 (Scout Comics)

Frankly, Scout Comics’ Frank On The Farm #1 is a disturbing read. But sometimes that’s a good thing. Written by Jordan Thomas, this title deals with the return of a […]

Frankly, Scout Comics’ Frank On The Farm #1 is a disturbing read. But sometimes that’s a good thing.

Written by Jordan Thomas, this title deals with the return of a young soldier to his family farm, during World War One (1914-1918). On his return, he is puzzled to discover that his family is missing, and all trace of them has disappeared too. Farm? Yes. Family? No.

Thomas writes the day darkly, imbuing Frank’s search for his family with menace and dread. The village shopkeepers are mean, the residents are ‘in the dark’ about whatever Frank is inquiring about. Family? Huh?

Artist Clark Bint plays puzzles with panel placement, putting ultra-small panels on a big tableau. Moving them, rearranging them willy-nilly. The angles of view are also restlessly explored, twisted, and examined. The extreme close-ups make us disoriented, unable to see the big picture. The experimental nature of Bint’s choice of angles keeps us from forming a close connection with Frank. We are distanced and irritated.

The drawings of the characters are, well, full of character. The colours are drab, with PTSD abounding. The surroundings take on personalities, flawed and bristling with sharp, unknown edges. It’s edgy, it’s original and puzzling. Will we become attached to Frank, as he pries apart the mystery of his missing people? There are no moments of love and attachment, no fond memories of the wonderful Walton days of yore. Is the story filling in the blank puzzle pieces, a bit of peace in our time, oh reader?

Going forward, it’s important that the creative team not topple the apple cart, not heavily telegraph this story by way of a leaden hand on the tiller. The listing and leaning panels, the disorienting closeups, and multiple angles can be overdone. Let’s hope for some stability for this zeppelin, this airborne missile of horror and entertainment needs to find its level.

Scout Comics, Frank On The Farm #1, $3.99 for 30 pages of content. Mature

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!!