Hexed is a macabre dance through a world of danger, intrigue and art. Michael Alan Nelson and Dan Mora have created a stunning world in which death is merely temporary, and paintings can literally take you to another world. In issue four the plot jumps forward with lightning speed. Lucifer, freshly returned from the world of the dead, finds herself a pawn in a game she didn’t even know she was playing. Yves, the super-powered creature from the painting, and his sister, Cymbaline, are in an arms race that ends only when one of them sends Lucifer back to Shade…permanently.
This issue is super action packed, and I was completely immersed the moment I began to read. My assumptions about the direction of the plot were totally wrong, which is awesome! Hexed presents a fast pace story that keeps you guessing, and dying to know what happens next, which can be a rare feat for the seasoned bookworm. Nelson always makes me laugh with his dialogue, and the relationship between the three main characters is dynamic and genuine. They share a very fairly classic, normal relationship. Val is the stern but caring mother figure and Lucifer and Raina are her unruly children who don’t quite get along. What makes it great is the juxtaposition of those relationships with a frankly pretty jacked up world, and some very odd career choices. Stealing magical artifacts that trap evil super beings is totally normal, right?
In this issue I particularly enjoyed this little bit of dialogue between Lucifer and Raina, showing the beginnings of their begrudging camaraderie after Raina pulls Lucifer out of Shade.
“You turned me into a necromancer with magic face tattoos!”
“Oh you can’t even see them. They only show up when you’re… necromancing. But you’ll probably want to stay away from black lights, cemeteries, too. And morgues. Maybe avoid hospitals all together.”
“… I am hating you as hard as I can right now”
Fun fact, the main cast of Hexed is almost entirely female, which is fabulous. Yves is the only recurring male in the series, unless you count Cymbaline’s avatar ( a human speaker system, basically). What’s even more fabulous, though, is that this is issue 4…and I just noticed this. I was too busy devouring the story. You’re too busy to notice because the characters are well written and stand up on their own, as you know, people. Too much plot is going on, and their gender is of little consequence.
Artist Dan Mora really outdoes himself in this issue of Hexed. It’s really great when you get to see an artist really show his chops, and this month he did just that. Throughout the issue Lucifer is chased through a series of paintings in Val’s gallery. Each “painting” naturally, is by a different artist and in a different style. Not only does Mora create each painting, but he draws the characters in the style as well, making them take on the characteristics of the paintings they are inhabiting. The coloring is done stunningly as well. The overall effect was amazing.
I really cannot highly recommend Hexed enough. It is a rare treat for me to find a story that absorbs me into the world so easily, and draws me into every page. Though macabre and a bit gorey, it is always elegantly done, and has a great blend of humor, too. This comic will appeal to fans of so many genres, fantasy, action, art lovers, urban fantasy lovers, and horror fans, just to name a few. Go ahead and pick up a copy of Hexed, it’s a steal.
Hexed #4 is available from Boom! Studios