“Shutter” is finally getting to a place where I feel safe to jump on board. The course of each issue has drastically changed from month to month making it hard to feel like, as the reader, I am in trusty hands. What I initially thought would be an adventure comic featuring a strong but flawed female ex-world-explorer now feels very little about that at all. But if the comic stays the course after this week’s issue, I’ll definitely be along for the ride.
ART BY: Leila De Duca
RELEASE: June 11, 2014
Review By: Bree Odgen
Like I said, the first issue of “Shutter” was slower and focused on establishing a character profile for our heroine, Kate Kristopher. In a painfully bizarre out-of-the-blue twist, we are thrown into a fight between robots, anthropomorphic rats, and mobster cats. The shift from character building to world building was so insane that all the attributes felt out of place, misused. There was no organic lead into the new storyline so I got lost. Not until this month’s issue do things start to settle in.
The plot of issue #3 seems to appropriately shift focus to the two most interesting story elements thus far: the Mahees Lane Gang and Kate. More importantly, it sets out to start Kate down the rabbit hole of her family history. And it leaves us on a delightful cliffhanger, making us wonder if she’s safe even with the people she grew up trusting. At this point, you wonder if anyone is truly on her side.
Each issue of “Shutter” has a variety of storylines that are set apart via differing illustrations. While I love this type of storytelling in theory, the actual shifts in the story feel so abrupt and different that it pulls me out. I appreciate the boldness in this storytelling, but sometimes the boldness must give way to continuity.
The world-building is another sticking point for me. I’ll admit, I’m getting used to it, it’s starting to work. But overall I feel like there is no continuity in the world-building. Basically anything and everything can be and is anthropomorphized. The giant mobster felines mixed with steampunk robots were hard enough to blend together, but the pumpkinhead nurse was just not gelling with the others. I’m of the school of thought that even fantasy must have a rhyme or reason to it, there must be something relatable, and some element of it must be grounded in reality. Unfortunately I don’t feel that way with much of the “Shutter” world-building.
All-in-all I was excited about the main two storyline in this week’s issue and I think they makes comic worth checking out in the months to come. Given that this comic has drastically improved from even just last month’s issue, I’m excited to see where it brings us in the following issues.