cover image Skeeters


Kelly Williams, Bob Frantz, and Kevin Cuffe. Mad Cave, $17.99 trade paper (112p) ISBN 978-1-95230-381-4

The squelching heart of a low-budget creature feature beats schlocky as ever in this vibrant but predictable graphic novel scripted by Frantz and Cuffe (the Metalshark Bro series) with art by Williams (the Bountiful Garden series). According to Sheriff Carla McCord, the only notable event in the history of backwoods burg Kankakee, Va., was the government’s construction of a “fancy-pants” research facility in the 1970s. But things get exciting fast when mosquito-like aliens invade through a power surge at the facility (where their pod has been held since it returned from space) and begin draining the life out of Kankakee County. Carla teams up with a man in black from the facility, Agent Ronald Smith, and two stoners from the local pest control company to save the day. The mismatched crew attempt to squash the beasts, as depicted in deliciously gaudy cartooning, bright coloring, and wonderfully slimy gore sure to sate any horror junkie’s needs. In contrast, the script, while quickly paced and never missing a chance for comedy, falls into the trap of being self-aware about genre tropes but unwilling to push their boundaries. Still, readers in the mood for revolting scares will bask in the blood and guts. (Mar.)