Writer: Kurtis J. Wiebe
Artist: Aluisio Santos
Publisher: Image Comics
(Victor Valley)–It might sound odd, but I have always imagined that being able to attend your own funeral would be the ultimate test to what you accomplished in life. Who shows up to pay their respects? Who have you made an impact on in your time here? It is like the ultimate test to see if you lived your life in a meaningful way. Well, in Image Comic’s Grim Leaper, the protagonist gets to attend his own funeral, again and again, just not the way I imagined.
Story: Grim Leaper tells the tale of Lou Collins, a man with a seemingly cruel curse. You see, Lou died a very gruesome death, more than once. Every time he dies, he is brought back in the body of a stranger, but not for long. He is stuck in this cycle of death and rebirth, which comes with violent, humorous results. Eventually, he meets a woman that is stuck in the same cycle; can love blossom before either of their numbers is punched again?
Kurtis J. Wiebe has written some of the best series to come out from the independent juggernaut known as Image Comics. His previous titles include the eerie Green Wake and the action packed Peter Panzerfaust, and with Grim Leaper, he does it again. The book reads like a gore filled, twisted episode of the old television series, Quantum Leap, and I couldn’t be happier. This is a great start to another excellent series.
Art: Brazilian artist Aluisio Santos brings the story to the comic book panels in a manner that fits the tone of the book. The gruesome deaths of Lou Collins are brought to “life” in a brilliant way, and the expressions on the characters are priceless. Santos flexes his art skills brilliantly; making this a one-two punch and one of the strongest Image Comics releases this year.
Overall: As I mentioned before, this book evoked memories of the old Quantum Leap TV series with Scott Bakula, which in my opinion is a great thing. The story is fresh, unique, and addicting, making you crave the second issue. Wiebe and Santos have made this a must watch series for 2012, so make sure it is on your to-read list. Highly Recommended, I give Grim Leaper #1 a perfect ***** out of 5.