cover image Gideon Falls

Gideon Falls

Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino. Image, $9.99 trade paper (160p) ISBN 978-1-5343-0852-7

In this spooky supernatural noir, disgraced priest Wilfred “Fred” Quinn, who struggles with alcoholism, gets ordered by his superior to the “nice little town” of Gideon Falls, where he replaces its deceased pastor. Things turn weird when the supposedly dead pastor materializes and shows Fred surreal visions of an eerie black barn, from which he emerges to discover a parishioner’s violent murder. Fred’s storyline is told in parallel with therapy sessions involving apparently schizophrenic, previously institutionalized Norton Sinclair and his skeptical therapist, Dr. Xu. Norton searches the town’s trash for clues to what he is convinced is a looming evil in the form of the black barn, and his therapist does not believe him—until she begins having visions of the structure herself. The narrative is a solid example of mystery box storytelling, as pieces of the puzzle fall into place throughout the story. Lemire (Sweet Tooth) scripts apt conversational dialogue, and the verisimilitude is cemented by photo-realist artwork by Sorrentino (I, Vampire). This first volume, however, is all setup—mysteries layered one upon another. While the True Detective vibe is appealing, some readers may not have the patience to wait for the follow-up. [em](Oct.) [/em]