Comic Review: The Strain #1

The Strain #1 1

When a Boeing 777 lands at JFK International Airport and goes dark on the runway, the Center for Disease Control, fearing a terrorist attack, calls in Dr. Ephraim Goodweather and his team of expert biological-threat first responders. Only an elderly pawnbroker from Spanish Harlem suspects a darker purpose behind the event-an ancient threat intent on covering mankind in darkness.

* From director Guillermo del Toro and novelist Chuck Hogan (Prince of Thieves)!

* Adapted for comics by Eisner Award-winning writer David Lapham!

I’ll be honest, I have no idea if The Strain is going to go apocalyptic or not- but it’s a damn good comic.

The comic starts with an elderly woman telling her grandson a scary story, just like any good horror film, before introducing us to one of our main characters and his messed-up personal life. So far, so typical, but one of the major good points of this comic is how… film-like it is. The dialogue and the way the art is used all reminded me of being in a cinema. I guess that’s the Del Toro influence.

It’s a slow starter, simply going with showing us the inciting incident – the plane of sick, dead people – and moving on to just a tiny hint of what’s coming next, but I prefer that kind of start to confusing action sequences. I like to get to know the characters that are going to go through hell.

The art is appropriate for the story. It’s nothing ground-breaking or startlingly new, but it’s effective and tells the story clearly.

In short, The Strain #1 is well worth picking up.

Rating: ★★★★☆

  1. Review copy provided by Dark Horse


Anninyn lives and works in the UK, though she writes in a world of her own. Raised on a steady diet of sci-fi, intellectualism and political thinking by hippies, she looks at modern life through a somewhat-...unique... lens. She is obsessed with the apocalypse, and can be reached at for all apocalypse-based inquiries. She is working on her first novel. You can find out about her and her other work through her website

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