182. Monocyte by Kasra Ghanbari

Monocyte by Kasra Ghanbari. Illustrated by Menton3 (Canada) - (US)

Pages: 226
Ages: 18+
Finished: Jul. 2, 2012
First Published: Aug. 14, 2012
Publisher: IDW Publishng
Genre: horror, fantasy, Gothic
Rating: 2.5/5

First sentence: The council will now hear the Marquis de Seraphim."

Publisher's Summary: Two warring immortal races rule a scarred world where time has no meaning. Death (Azrael) sits impotent, quietly planning his restoration. He summons Monocyte, a forgotten immortal necromancer who long ago chose sleep in his failed quest to die. With a fatal pact sealed, Monoctye strikes out as Azrael's vicious proxy. The MONOCYTE collected edition is a 224-page oversized 9x13.5" hardcover that includes the series prequel previously only available digitally, all four issues, all eight side stories, and all 12 covers. This includes art by Ashley Wood, Bill Sienkiewicz, George Pratt, Phil Hale, Barron Storey, Ben Templesmith, Riley Rossmo, Christopher Mitten, David Stoupakis, and Chris Newman. The over 60 pages of new content will be filled in part with art contributions by internationally-known comic book and fine artists/sculptors such as Scott Radke, Matthew Bone, Guillermo Rigattieri, Richard A. Kirk, Alberto Ruiz, Tim Roosen, Richard Friend, Toby Cypress, and many more.

Acquired: Received an egalley from Netgalley.

Reason for Reading: The art looked compelling and while the summary was vague it piqued my paranormal interests.  I enjoy stories which feature Death personified.

This comic is very, very strange.  It really bares multiple readings to understand completely, something I would be up to if I owned the physical hardcopy; I read an ecopy provided by the publisher.  Let's start with the good.  The great actually.  The graphics are absolutely stunning.  If you are a fan of dark Gothic art, surreal scenarios, macabre and sensual creatures, you will be in awe.  Since the book is printed in an oversized format, the art is going to be staggering (remember I am only seeing it in a digital format.)

The story itself is quite confounding and I'll just come out and admit it, way over my head, especially for a single reading. There are many Biblical allusions, quotes from scripture only slightly altered, direct references to Christ, allegory and the message that ultimately the way to everlasting life is through death.  In all honesty, I'm not quite sure if the author's intentions are to mock or evangelize Christianity.  There is one horrific scene, the killing of a baby, which I immediately related to abortion in our world.  As a Christian myself, perhaps my worldview interpreted things the way they mean to me.  Perhaps your reading experience, based on your worldview may be more occult, paranormal or fantasy.  I'll sum it up again with one word.  Strange!


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