**POSSIBLE SPOILERS BELOW**
Comics can be many things. They can be funny, scary, sad, action-packed, and so much more. Like any medium of artistic storytelling, they can represent fantasy, science-fiction, or a grounded tale similar to that of our own world. They can talk about political themes, and be controversial. That’s what makes Murder Falcon #1 so great. It’s so many different things. It’s about loss, and regret. It’s about self-worth and our value in the world. It’s about… okay, it’s mostly about a badass Falcon Humanoid thing called Murder Falcon (or Murf for short) who asks a guy who plays guitar to shred heavy metal licks while he kicks monsters ass. I never asked for this comic, but it was given to me like an awesome head-banging gift from the gods of 80s Heavy Metal.
Daniel Warren Johnson is both the writer, and artist on this book, and he must have had a ball with this. You may or may not know him for his comic, Extremity, which I was a big fan of. This comic jumps way more off the deep end though. It’s an unapologetic 1980s hard-rock love song to the time of heavy metal, garage bands, old beat up vans, and sick guitar solos. Just you know, with a Murder Falcon. I had a smile on my face the entire time I read it. The main protagonist Jake plays the down on his luck dude who doesn’t jam with his friends anymore, and as you learn toward the final pages of the book, has gone through some pretty rough stuff in life. Enter the Falcon and his new transformed guitar to give him a new lease on life fighting monsters to save humanity. The catch is that, Jake doesn’t fight, he shreds on his guitar while the Murder Falcon fights. Think of the music as fuel, like spinach for Popeye.
I have talked about how fun the story is, but no comic is complete without art, and Daniel Warren Johnson rocks it in that department as well. The pencils and inks by Daniel, and the colors by Mike Spicer match the energy of the music this book is celebrating. I didn’t feel like any panel or scene was wasted, and even the words had an energy to them that was meant to make you feel like the volume was turned up to 11 when Jake shreds and Murder Falcon fights. The art is fast paced, over the top, and you can tell they had a blast creating it. The design on the monsters are great, and felt like a mix of classic fantasy and Kaiju. I can’t wait to see what they look like as more issues come out.
In conclusion, I highly recommend Murder Falcon #1. Especially if you love heavy metal, or were born in the 1980s or lived through them. Now that doesn’t mean that everyone can’t find something to love about this book. It is a ton of fun, and I only imagine it getting better from here. What about the rest of Jake’s band? What kind of ridiculous fights or powers will Murder Falcon have with more instruments? To be honest, I don’t care if I find any of this out, because this comic is about sitting back, strapping in, and letting this book take you on a fun ridiculous heavy metal ride.
Story: Daniel Warren Johnson
Pencils/Inks: Daniel Warren Johnson Colors: Mike Spicer
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy