Menton3’s ‘The Memory Collectors’ is a stunning debut that defies the nature of conventional comic books. Instead it opts to tell a story with a blend of prose and beautiful painted panels. The book is chock full of original concepts explained with casual confidence that results in a deeply engaging origin story unlike any other.
Beatrice, Edith, and Magdelena live in an enlightened world. They are aware of the horrors that walk among us and defend the world from them. The rest of us are merely cattle, lead to believe we are free under the guise of society.
Edith walks us through the enlightened world. She teaches us how to see things for what they really are. She spots what looks to be a man, but explains he is a beast. Menton3’s fantastic use of voiceover narration builds his world within the first few pages. Immediately we’re treated to a humorous exchange between Edith and her attacker on the history of high heels.
The art is simply stunning. The feeling of dread is unparalleled as Edith stands before her attacker. There is wispy sense to the creature as his blackness dissipates over him. The confrontation itself is depicted in stark white contrast. It allows the action to take center stage and truly stand out for the rest of the page. It’s remarkably effective and deceptively simple.
The final pages of the confrontation are stunning. The beautiful work by Menton3 on full display by the end. Edith vanquishes the creature in grand fashion and the book allows us to revel in the moment.
After the initial conflict we take a step back to develop the characters. Here Menton3 treats us to a prose explanation of how Edith came to be the woman we just saw. It’s incredible because it allows for a great deal more explanation that the typical book. It does slow down the pacing, but at the same time the rest of the pages are wonderfully light on dialogue and explanation. The art is allowed to speak for itself.
By the end of the book we have a unique perspective. Menton3 makes sure you understand everything within this world. With just enough explanation of our character’s pasts, combined with enlightenment about the nature of memory collectors, everything about the overarching conflict of the book is put into place.
The result is a fantastically paced story that broods in darkness. “The Memory Collectors” has a certain self-awareness. It allows our imaginations to take hold. You’ll envision these women vanquishing horrors every time you gaze into a dark alley. It helps that Menton3 solidifies this by allowing his characters to hunt at comic conventions. It’s the type of genius move that will put every cosplay into question this weekend at NYCC.
This debut issue shouldn’t be missed. It’s a deadly concoction of engaging characters in an enlightened and dangerous world. The entire thing is brought to life by breathtaking art. “The Memory Collectors” will get under your skin, into your brain, and have you looking over your shoulder.
Rating 4.5/5 Skulls.