Welcome to the streets of a futuristic dystopian city, comprised of architectural influences including Syd Mead’s Blade Runner designs, The Crow, and some European flair by way of cobblestone streets and foreboding archways. Welcome to the world of Radical Comics Ryder On The Storm.

RYDER ON THE STORM #1 (1 of 3)
COVER BY: FRANCESCO “MATT” MATTINA
WRITER: DAVID HINE
ARTIST: WAYNE NICHOLS
COLORED BY: FEIGIAN CHONG and SANSAN SAW of SIXTH CREATION
LETTERED BY: RICHARD STARKINGS and COMICRAFT’S JIMMY BENTANCOURT
PUBLISHED BY: RADICAL COMICS

Things are not what they seem in the world of Licensed Private Eye Mr. Ryder (he has a first name, but doesn’t care for it and does not share it). He is about to accept a high-profile assignment from a woman whose beauty is eclipsed only by her mysterious behavior.

She’s a Very Kinky Girl

It would appear there has been a suicide, although we still haven’t ruled out the possibility of murder. Ryder’s striking client Katrina Petruska (who works in kinky sex club), says she walked in on the bloody aftermath of her boyfriend’s collision with a power drill to his skull…11 times. The splash page containing the image of the dead boyfriend is disturbing, striking and I couldn’t take my eyes off of it. The stakes are high due to the high societal status of the deceased. Ryder knows that he has his work cut out for him, but he can’t begin to suspect what he’s going to uncover during his investigation.

Writer David Hine and illustrator Wayne Nichols collaborated previously on another Radical Comics release, 2009’s rather excellent FVZA, also known as the Federal Vampire and Zombie Agency. Hine weaves many plot threads throughout this 1st issue. In retrospect, it’s amazing how much characterization and plot development this creative team expertly infuses into this supernaturally kinky noir tale.

Great Value With High Production Values

As always, Radical delivers on lushly rendered art and top quality production, all with their eye on providing value on their traditionally higher cover price. Readers shouldn’t shy away from the $4.99 price tag: for 52 pages of glossy goodness, you’re still getting more bang from your buck than your average priced ‘Big Two’ comic.

I have only a few brief criticisms for this book. We’re treated to a rather in-depth psychoanalysis from an otherwise stoic and latently competitive Police Detective. This moment lacked authenticity. Also, the lush digital paintings have a tendency to leave the characters with an artificially waxy appearance.
Having said that, the positives for Ryder On The Storm far outweigh the minor stumbles. So much is happening within the confines of this sprawling plot that I’m anxious to see where the remainder of the series takes us. I can tell you personally that I’m in for the Ryde.

Ryder On The Storm earns an impressive 4 out of 5 stars.

Rating: ★★★★☆

The Author

Mike McLarty

Mike McLarty

A San Diego native, Mike has comics in his blood and has attended the San Diego Comic Con every year since 1982. His comic interests are as varied as his crimes against humanity, but he tends to lean heavily towards things rooted in dystopian themes. His favorite comic series is Warren Ellis’ and Darick Robertson’s Transmetropolitan. Spider Jerusalem is the best character ever devised. Mike realizes those statements will alienate a good portion of his potential audience, but those are the facts. You are unlikely to find a single collector with a better Transmetropolitan art portfolio than the one he has in his possession. He is an Assistant Editor for the upcoming Transmetropolitan Charity Book.

He also occasionally freelances for various other comics websites, which he promotes through his homepage (www.comickarma.com), Twitter and other inherently intrusive forms of social media. Mike firmly believes that the best writers come from the UK. This could be because he’s of Irish descent; not so much based on physical geography as the fact that the Irish like to drink heavily.

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2 Comments

  1. Damascus
    October 31, 2010 at 10:51 pm — Reply

    I’m no detective, but I would probably rule out suicide given that I really doubt that there is anyone that’d be capable of drilling into their own skull 11 times. Also, I wonder how many times they’ll play with variations on the name “Ryder”, like a Pale Ryder Approaches, etc.

  2. November 14, 2010 at 3:57 pm — Reply

    Yeah, I would tend to agree. The ‘Ryder’ gimmick is something they should play lightly. Little goes a long way, y’know?

    Did you get a chance to read the book?

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