Review: Mister Crowley #1

The first time I watched the movie Evil Dead was years ago and it genuinely freaked me out. It centered a man Ash Williams who goes up to a cabin with his girlfriend and three pals. There, they find an old book whose text if spoken would unleash demons and evil spirits. Of course, the movie was never a hit when it came out. Thanks to Blockbuster Video and VHS many fans like me would find the movie years after and become rabid fans of what would become cult classic movie series. The movies, which were both scary and fun, made itself its own genre as it is defined as horror but is quite unlike the rest of the genre. This is mostly due to Bruce Campbell’s performance and what he brought to the movies, and to the television series, which lived in the same vein and was just as hilarious. It is also made the occult, somewhat tangible, as many creators dipped their toes in this genre, with mixed results.

One of the better takes is Hellblazer or John Constantine, depending on when you found the character and who wrote it. The character has a wicked sense of humor and a pragmatic sensibility. In Mister Crowley we find another protagonist within this world whose fight has just begun.

Taking possession of a stoner’s body, the ghost of a restless occultist tracks the only entity to defeat him while fending off demon bounty hunters and other paranormal threats. We meet a young man, Douglas, who awakens in a hospital to hear some orderlies talk about his recent outburst. He slowly gets himself together, he hears the same voice that caused his recent episode that helps him escape. This same voice guides him to another room, where an evil spirit, known as the Vanatu, has possessed a young woman’s body. As he escapes, Douglas finds out that Aleister Crowley is what inhabits him and has given him the power he has shown.

Overall, the comic is an enjoyable entry into this wild world where everyone is more than they appear, as eyes will deceive. The story by Dan Ball is fast, action packed, and layered. The art by the creative team is vivid and alluring. Altogether, an excellent book which is more than a welcome addition in the horror comic genre.

Story: Dan Ball Art: CJ Oechsle, Jon-Peter Buzio, and Toben Racicot
Story: 9.4 Art: 9.3 Overall: 9.5 Recommendation: Buy