Review: Eleanor & The Egret #1

The most daring art thief in Paris has struck again, and the police have assigned their best detective to the case. His only clue? A single white feather left at the scene. Could this feather belong to the thief? To the thief’s accomplice, an oversized talking egret? Or will his investigation lead him to somewhere even stranger? (Answer: all of the above.) Presenting a peculiar and unforgettable tale of birds and banditry, paintings and pets, larceny, love and… lamprey-wielding assassins?

Aftershock Comics has been consistently releasing solid series from a “who’s who” of creators and this week sees the latest with Eleanor & The Egret from writer John Layman and artist Sam Kieth. That combination alone of writer and artist had me super excited to read what sounds like a fun and cute story that feels like it fills a gap of the types of stories Aftershock releases.

Whimsical is one way I’d describe this story that feels like a mix of time periods as to when it takes place so not only is it whimsical, but there’s a sense of magical too. Layman and Kieth have put together a world that is very close to ours, but there’s just slight difference in the demeanors of individuals and how some dress that makes it feel like a mix, part victorian/steampunk (minus the steampunk) part modern. It’s interesting in that way and the setting is unique.

The first issue knocks it out of the park introducing us to the key individuals, settining things up with some fun and funny action, and also sets up conflict beyond the police detective looking for an art thief. There’s a twist there while not unique is still interesting and again feels a little like a throwback.

Layman is helped by Kieth who is a master of blending worlds and whose art I’ve loved for what feels like decades at this point. Kieth has a distinctive style in both how characters are drawn and the coloring that goes along with it all. Here too his artistic style is fantastic adding to the overall vibe of the comic in a similar way that Janet Lee enhances Jim McCann Dapper Men series.

This first issue is a fun start of a quirky new series that delivers cute entertainment and has me really looking forward to see what happens next and where it all goes.

Story: John Layman Art: Sam Kieth
Story: 8.35 Art: 8.35 Overall: 8.35 Recommendation: Buy