Advanced Comic Review – We Can Never Go Home #1

Adam reads as many comics as he can afford. Every week he attempts a review of one of them, with potential minor spoilers.

Black Mask Studios very kindly provided us with an advance copy of the upcoming We Can Never Go Home #1, released this Wednesday 25th March. We Can Never Go Home was written by Matthew Rosenberg and Patrick Kindlon, with art by Josh Hood, colours by Amanda Scurti, letters from Jim Campbell and design by Dylan Todd. They even included this nifty trailer to tease the series.

We Can Never Go Home stars two high school students, Duncan and Madison, who both possess strange and secret abilities. Blowing of some steam at make-out point by firing a handgun at some bottles (I just assume all teenagers are armed these days), Duncan interrupts Madison and her boyfriend Ben in the middle of some vehicular promiscuity. Ben confronts him, and pushes Madison down when she tries to intervene. She doesn’t take kindly to this, using some form of latent strength to throw him through one side of the car and out the other, crashing to the ground and running off calling her a freak. Duncan reveals to her that he also has powers, specifically the power to kill with his mind – something he discovered rather tragically. The pair quickly develop a bond, with Duncan making Madison a mixtape and giving her a walkman (other cassette players used to be available) to listen to it on. She rushes over to his house to thank him, but events suddenly unfold in a quick and violent manner, and they both have to go on the run. They can never go home.

This is the first book I have read from Rosenberg and Kindlow, it may even be the first comic I have read from Black Mask Studios, and I am grateful for the chance to check out something more independent for a change. The story of Duncan and Madison is compelling, with solid first issue here. Both characters have a no-nonsense grungey edge, in keeping with the aesthetic of the book, managing to avoid the clichés and trappings of the high school roles they play, and with them going on the run there shouldn’t be any danger of getting bogged down in that environment. The wider premise of the story, as it opens out at the end of the issue, is where this comic really shows promise. This first instalment functions largely as a very competent introduction to our main characters.

The art by Hood is realistic and grounded, particularly strong for facial detail and expressions, with a downplayed approach to the powers we have seen so far from Madison. Scurti’s colours bring a great heavy feel to the backgrounds, with oppressive shading and accentuated bright blood rounding off the art well.

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We Can Never Go Home is a very decent start to what hopefully will be an interesting story, a road movie of sorts where the characters are constantly looking over their shoulders to see if their collective past is catching up to them. Issue #1 is out this Wednesday (25th March 2015), so check it out at your local comic book shop or try it out digitally.

Score: 7.5 Mixtapes out of 10

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