To quote David Bowie: “Fame, it’s mine, it’s mine, it’s just his line to bind your time, it drives you to crime.” Although that quote probably has the song now stuck in your head, it also nicely sums up the plot to The Forevers. The first volume of this series from Black Mask Studios has been collected into a trade paperback, available now wherever comic books are sold. The quest for fame and the drive to stay famous are the two main themes of this series by writer Curt Pires. In The Forevers, a group of friends take part in a magic ritual that imbues them with mystic power. Power they then use to achieve their dreams of fame and lead glamorous lives. Ten years later, when one of them dies, the rest realize that her share of the power has been split between the rest of the group. Now one of them is killing off the others in an attempt to claim all the power for themself. It’s up to the others to figure out who the killer is before he succeeds in picking them all off.
In my opinion, crime thrillers and fantasy elements don’t mix that well. Often, I feel like either the mystery itself would be no match for the magic at play; or that the mystery could take place anywhere, thus making the fantasy world irrelevant. Neither of these is the case for The Forevers. Writer Curt Pires strikes an encapsulating balance between the elements of mystery and fantasy. The world Pires has created is an accurate mirror of our world and the magic is believable. He grounds the story with emotions and desires to which all readers can relate. Then he uses those emotions and desires as the blocks on which he builds the mystery and suspense throughout the story.
Pires employs an interesting storytelling technique throughout the book. Panels on one half of the page are dedicated to one character’s perspective while the panels on the other half are from a different character’s point of view. This storytelling device allows Pires to cover a lot of ground in a short amount of time, which keeps the story flowing at a fast pace. It also establishes connections and contrast between the various characters, making their development even more interesting.
The Forevers has some of the most realistic artwork I’ve seen in a long time. Eric Scott Pfeiffer’s illustrations look like he used real people as models. I wouldn’t be surprised if the main characters in this series are based on his real-life friends. Thanks to his art, reading the first volume of this series is almost like watching a television show. That’s how clear and real the characters look on the page. Pfeiffer’s color choices further add to the reality contained within his artwork. Using shades of color alone, he distinguishes background from foreground without having to use dark, bold outlines around the objects and characters he draws. This makes the focus of each panel abundantly clear and instantly draws the reader’s eye to the subject of that panel. Also, keep your eyes peeled for cameos by Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert Plant. Their likenesses expertly captured by Pfeiffer’s pen.
To quote Bowie one last time, “Fame, what you get is no tomorrow.” The Forevers is a very well-crafted mystery with just the right mix of fantasy elements. The story remains exciting throughout while examining the implications behind the quest for fame and the ramifications of achieving that status. The artwork is phenomenal. There need to be more books on the shelf that are drawn like this one. I enjoy “house style” as much as the next fan, but there’s something truly engaging about the realistic nature of the art in this series. If you missed this five-issue series when it was released, now’s your chance to check out this fantastic story.
Story: Curt Pires Art: Eric Scott Pfeiffer Letterer: Colin Bell
Story: 9.0 Art: 10 Overall: 9.5 Recommendation: Buy
Black Mask Studios provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review