I'm a big fan of Adam Cheal's work and I think this might be my favourite of his so far. Terminus at Fenton's Green plays merry hell with the idea of evil lurking just beneath the surface. The period in which it's set is perfect for the Gothic horror story that unfolds; the Victorian civility offset against the sinister undercurrent. Like all good horror it doesn't take itself too seriously and there are some great comic touches, my favourite being the line, "Typical, there's never a policeman when you need one." It won't make any sense without the accompanying image but I won't spoil it for you.
Again, I'm steering clear of spoilers but the tale very cleverly taps into a story/event that everybody will recognise, adding an extra dimension to the book. This layer of the story is built up throughout, using flashbacks which are unexplained, leaving the reader to fend for him or herself rather than being spoon-fed the plot.
The writing is strong, as you'd expect from Mr. Cheal and the artwork from Russ Leach is, to repeat another perfectly used phrase in the book, 'to die for'. Even the colouring is well thought out. In the opening chapter the colouring is understated, which allows for some nice hints of character in those early frames, the rest is on glorious full colour except for some choice use of black and white to highlight the flashback scenes. Nicely done.
There's a good bundle of extras too; sketches and page development and even a bonus story.
The internet is full of people (like myself) complaining that the big comics companies don't experiment enough............my advice? Look elsewhere.....look here. Terminus at Fenton's Green plays beautifully with your perceptions from the very get go.
It's the kind of read that begs for return viewings as the ending demands that it stays lodged in your psyche...taunting you for not paying attention.
Scripted by the sublime Adam Cheal and gorgeously portrayed by Russ Leach - two talents I suspect you'll be hearing more of - this tome is one of those opportunities to get in on the ground floor. When you're seeing those names on the opening credits to the movie based on this in a few years time you'll be able to appear smug to your peers.
And isn't that, ultimately, what we all want for ourselves isn't it?
Treated myself to the hardback edition and was extremely pleased that I did. It is an achingly beautiful book, lovingly put together by people new to the industry but clearly having a lot of fun in the process. Mr Cheal delivers a swift rollicking period tale that breezes along completely in sync with Russ Leach's heavily researched and gloriously detailed artwork. A powerful pairing and ones to watch out for in the future. Can't wait to see what they come up with next.
Terminus At Fenton's Green is an absolute classic story brought to you by the twisted imagination of Adam Cheal (author of the awesome Toxic Storm) - with art by Russ Leach. The combined efforts, of a startling and enthralling narrative and Russ's exemplary art, delivers a luxurious horror, filled with monsters, demons and a classy ending to leave you wanting more.