Tag Archives: sharlene kindt

Review: Dept. H #8

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Trapped in a flooding undersea base, Mia and the crew stumble upon a scientific discovery as their time is running out. They begin to fight among themselves about what to do with this valuable information, until one Dept. H crew member decides to take matters into his own hands.

As pressure mounts from both the inside and outside, Bob’s story is told in Dept. H #8. Bob is much more than his appearance would suggest and this issue really makes that apparent. The tale is a curious one considering Mia and Roger sit in a flooding chamber. But, writer Matt Kindt delivers a distraction from that.

The art by Kindt and Sharlene Kindt is much darker and contributes well to the mounting pressure in the story. It manages to do a superb job keeping things as grim as the situation appears. Yet there still seems to be a contrast in the atmosphere as the view switches from inside the chamber to outside of the chamber.

Story: Matt Kindt Art: Sharlene Kindt, Matt Kindt
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Dept H #7

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TIME IS RUNNING OUT!

As the water rises inside their base, tensions rise among the Dept. H crew. They desperately try to stop the flooding of the headquarters, but a sacrifice hardly buys them any more time. They’ve got twelve hours to stem the tide.

With only three issues left of Dept. H, the crew seems to be facing imminent catastrophe from every angle. Writer Matt Kindt has made sure that the upcoming issues will make an interesting read as the series comes to a close. I’m curious to see if Mia can solve her father’s murder before everything goes wrong. Will the crew reach the surface alive or will they perish under the sea?

Compared to the colorful previous issues, this issue has a much darker tone. Matt Kindt and Sharlene Kindt use shades of black, and green mostly instead of the more vibrant color scheme we’ve seen in the past. Which, given the shift in the story, is a good move I think.

Story: Matt Kindt  Art: Sharlene Kindt and Matt Kindt
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Dept. H #7

dept-h-7-coverMatt Kindt is a massive talent.  He is one of the few people in the industry where I feel his art matches his writing.  I think the best thing I can call someone in this industry is original, and Matt Kindt is just that.  Dept. H may not be his first, or even his most recognized work, but it is one of my favorites.

The story follows Mia, a special investigator hired to uncover a possible sabotage taking place at a deep-sea research station.  The series is a “whodunit” featuring a cast of characters with outward traits ranging from kind and helpful to cold and suspicious.  Like any good mystery, it is becoming apparent that things aren’t always what they seem.  The book does a good job at playing with your preconceived notions, and keeping you distracted.  Just when I feel like I have something figured out, disaster rears its ugly head again.  This is what Mia is constantly dealing with in Dept. H.  The closer she is to solving the murder of her father, the closer she is to death.  She is not only fighting to solve the case, she is fighting for her life.

I like this book for many reasons, but one of my favorite things is that it reminds us that people are grey.  There isn’t always a cut and dry suspect.  Things like our own prejudices, paranoia, and other variables can skew our views on someone.  Each issue does a good job of taking a look at why each of the crew members in Dept. H would kill Mia’s father, further messing with the reader.

This issue focuses on Mia, Roger, Aaron, and Jerome.  Mia is with Roger as the crew is trying to stop the base from flooding, while Aaron went to go get Jerome who has been seemingly losing his mind.  Things take a turn here, and we get some fantastic character development into Aaron’s history with Mia’s father, Hari.  I am starting to feel the same claustrophobia and panic as the crew members.

The art is incredible, and I am not just referencing the brilliant work we usually see from Matt, but in the colors from Sharlene Kindt as well.  The watercolors take this book over the top, and are such a beautiful contrast to the dark and dreary underwater setting.  I probably looked at the jellyfish on the first page for a few minutes before I even read the story.  You are truly getting art here, and I have to get some prints of this work to hang on my wall.  The little sketches and notes in the beginning and ending of the book are nice touches and let us in the minds of the two talented Kindts if only for brief moments.

I highly recommend this book, and it is only getting better.  If you have been reading the series, I probably don’t have to tell you to keep going.  If you haven’t been, get caught up on the issues or get it in trade when the first volume drops in January.  This is one of the best comics coming out this week, and one of the best comics coming out period.

Story: Matt Kindt Art: Matt Kindt Color: Sharlene Kindt
Story: 9 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Dept H. #5

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Under six miles of water, the pressure is rising. On her mission to rescue her brother, Mia encounters some of the ocean’s most dangerous creatures. It seems that the more clues she uncovers about her father’s murder, the more complicated the case becomes.

The pressure builds in Dept. H #5 as things go from bad to almost catastrophic. While issue keeps the dark, mystery constant it does reveal water spiders! The small aquatic arachnids make things interesting, as they are capable of mimicking voices which adds to the creepy factor. Despite managing to rescue Mia’s brother, things get worse. I’m really curious to see how writer Matt Kindt wraps up the series with only a few issues remaining.

The watercolor art style really works well for this series. It aids in creating a convincing ocean environment, with a lot of contrast. The large turtle seen on the cover actually makes an appearance inside the darkness of the cave. It’s not just a beautiful image on the cover. Kindt along with Sharlene Kindt continue to deliver a comic that’s as amazing to look at as it is to read.

Story: Matt Kindt Art: Matt Kindt, Sharlene Kindt
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Dept H #3

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Matt Kindt’s survival sci-fi series continues!

After being stranded on the ocean floor, Mia is brought back to headquarters and leads a rescue party to bring back her missing brother. As the investigations into his disappearance and the station’s destroyed antenna continue, a terrible virus emerges and wreaks havoc on the crew.

Dept. H #3 continues the mystery filled science fiction, and this issue doesn’t disappoint. The amount of paranoia escalates as a crew member threatens to sabotage the base, in order to destroy it and threatens to kill everyone on the undersea base, by flooding it with water and sea creatures. I won’t spoil if the plan succeeds, but the tension ratchets up throughout the issue.

The art manages to include flashbacks of Mia’s life as she grows up following the adventures of her father, quite literally. Using shades of blue and black manages to distinguish the past, from the present. Yet they collide as Mia hallucinates the strange being on the cover. Who is he? Is the figure her father’s ghost?

Story: Matt Kindt Art: Matt Kindt and Sharlene Kindt
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Dept. H #2

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Mia’s investigation into the sabotage of an underwater station becomes complicated by the disappearance of a loved one, the loss of communications with the world above, and a confrontation with a giant squid and other strange creatures of the deep.

The subtle mix in Dept. H of noir, and science fiction/horror with a slight Lovecraftian vibe is getting more intriguing by the issue. It makes it hard to wait for June to get issue 3. This is issue contains some very interesting flashbacks, about Mia’s father and his previous work in space. While there is seems to be some mystery as to what he and his team is doing in space, remains to be see yet it does make one wonder. Even though there seems to be some connection to his work in the vastness of the ocean, only making one wonder what?

The mixture of black and white art, and color is brilliant. It makes it really easy for the reader to distinguish the past, and the present. There is something oddly intriguing about his mix of black, and the bright color of the fish.

Story: Matt Kindt Art: Matt Kindt and Sharlene Kindt
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Dept H. #1

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From New York Times best-selling MIND MGMT creator Matt Kindt comes an exciting new undersea sci-fi mystery.

Mia is a special investigator hired to uncover possible sabotage taking place at a deep-sea research station. What she finds is a mind-blowing crime scene filled with suspects with terrible secrets, strange deep-sea creatures, and an impending flood!

Intriguing, and enthralling Dept. H can been thought of as 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea meets Clue. The combo might seem like fire and water as, but it all blends together into a blue tapestry. The first issue is definitely a unique read among modern comics.

The art style is very unique. Which allows the uniqueness of the story to be bolstered, as the view transitions. IF only from the brightness of the sun to the darkness of the sea.

Story & Art: Matt Kindt Art: Sharlene Kindt
Story: 8.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy

Dark Horse Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Dept. H #1

STL001111This is the story of Mia as she is sent down to the undersea science facility known as “Dept. H” to investigate the murder of her father. The title is very clever. Stop reading there.

First, let’s start by saying that the art is amazing. The textures of the paper, the faded tones of the watercolor, it all gives this book a delightfully vintage look and that makes it fun to flip through. It is a wonderful demonstration of the Matt & Sharlene Kindt team. If only one thing could be said about this book, it’s that it is a visual work of art and enough truth would be in that statement to let it go.

However, if a second consideration was required, it would be hard to look away from how this story feels forced. Half the book consists of Mia visiting men who tell her she shouldn’t go down to Dept. H only for her to dryly assert that she will, in fact, go down there. It feels like a dry reading of a script that the actor’s aren’t really excited to be a part of. Considering the book begins with Mia going down there, and these scenes are all in the past, they serve only to slow the story from taking off.

“But isn’t exciting to see a truly gifted investigator solve a case that effects them so personally?” you ask. Yeah, maybe. And if Mia were the Sherlock Holmes of undersea facilities, that might take you somewhere. However, it’s stated that the real reason for sending her down there is that it is personal for her. It’s almost as if to say, “Yeah, we have a really good private investigator, law enforcement should go down there and ask some questions and God knows our insurance company would typically send a team of people down there to ascertain liability… but it turns out nobody really cares so we’re just sending his daughter. You’re free, right?”

After that, Mia meets the crew, she goes alone to investigate the crime scene because no one cares enough personally or professionally to go with her to see their dead co-worker floating around their workplace, and then she comes back and we meet the crew again. The saddest part is the revelation that her father was apparently Steve Zissou from The Life Aquatic.

Now, this may sound like nitpicking. However, this is a main character who doesn’t stand out on her own and must shoehorn in supporting characters from her personal life in an attempt to try to make her accessible rather than interacting with the crew who will be the book’s suspects. It’s like offering personal references on a resume. Sure, they may give some fantastic insight in to who you are, but no one really knows them and we’ll probably never hear from them again.

All in all, this a great book to flip through, to encourage an aspiring artist. If you are looking for plot or character development, this book has little depth.

Disagree? Hate that last pun? Tell me in the comments below or on Twitter.

Story & Art: Matt Kindt Art: Sharlene Kindt
Story: 4 Art 8: Overall: 6 Recommendation: Pass

Dark Horse provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Preview: Dept. H # 1

DEPT. H # 1

by Matt & Sharlene Kindt
On Sale: April 20, 2016

Beginning April 20, Matt and Sharlene Kindt present DEPT. H, a riveting, undersea locked-room murder mystery. Each issue of the monthly series from Dark Horse Comics covers a period of 24 hours and follows the exploits of Mia, a special investigator hired to uncover the truth about what happened at a deep-sea research station. What she discovers is a mind-blowing crime scene filled with suspects with terrible secrets, strange deep-sea creatures…. and an impending flood.

The smartest man in the world has been murdered. Six miles deep in the ocean, there are seven suspects with compelling motives. A woman with her own connections to the victim is dispatched to the depths to solve the case. No one is safe.

Inspired by his love of Jacque Cousteau, Jules Verne, CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON and James Bond underwater action scenes, NEW YORK TIMES bestselling creator Matt Kindt collaborates for the first time on an ongoing series with his wife, Sharlene, who colors Kindt’s pages with evocative water colors. Together they’ve created a smart, pulpy adventure, one of the most anticipated new ongoing titles of 2016 and a worthy successor to Kindt’s critically acclaimed, bestselling MIND MGMT. We invite you to dive in.

Dept H #1 Cover