Two DC tales for fans of quirky comics: Doom Patrol offers stylish stories

By Halie Frahm

DC comics has taken on a new venture with an uncanny imprint of one of the strangest and most iconic books the company has ever published. Gerard Way, the author that brought the Eisner winning graphic novel “Umbrella Acadamy” into the realm of Dark Horse comics, has just released a new, mature readers issue of the Arnold Drake classic “Doom Patrol.”

Drake’s “Doom Patrol”  was originally published in the ’60s in hopes of initiating a competition with Marvel’s “X-Men.” In comparison, it failed miserably, but it continued to remain a forgotten misfit of DC/Vertigo history until Grant Morrison innovated comic surrealism and brought it to the forefront of a more recent pop culture.

The first issue of Way’s “Doom Patrol: Young Animal,” is seemingly haphazard with no clear direction of plot or any thematic lines. So much so that it becomes apparent that it is extremely purposeful. With pages lined with slight humor and a very thought provoking metaphor about a gyro, it’s a style to it’s own, and it shines amongst the shelves not only in a literary sense but an artistic one as well.

The illustration of the book bears an almost science fiction level pseudo-realism, via the talents of Nick Derington. Tamra Bonvillain has executed some quite fascinating work on the color aspects of the comic that really help portray the moods of each panel. This especially begins to show when a singing telegram (with a bizarre resemblance to Columbia of “Rocky Horror Picture Show,”) comes into the story.

With four new books to look forward to in the next coming months, fans of oddballs and underdogs  like “Neverboy” by Shaun Simon or “Shade, the Changing Man” better jump on the Young Animal bandwagon while they can.

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply