Ever play Bloody Mary at a sleepover with friends? Me neither. There’s a reason for that – BECAUSE YOU’RE GONNA DIE!
GRIMM TALES OF TERROR #7
Writers: Joe Brusha, Ralph Tadesco, Josh Gorfain
Artist: Joel Ojeda and Eleonora Carlini
Colorist: Fran Gamboa
Letterer: Micah Myers
Editor: Nicole Glade
Publisher: Zenescope Entertainment
Cover Price: $3.99
Previously in Grimm Tales of Terror: As this is a horror anthology series, the events of last issue have little to no connection to what is going on in this issue. What should you know? People generally die in this series in horrific ways, and hopefully a life lesson is learned along the way.
As most fairy tales begin, Mary doesn’t really care that much for her stepmother, and the urban legend of Bloody Mary – ghost who will exact vengeance for you – is too much to pass up at an all girl slumber party. Things go from scary to horrifying as the true killer of Mary’s mother is revealed, and in classic Zenescope style, revenge is indeed extracted. Happily every after, yada, yada, yada? There is actually a very nice moment at the end where a bit of happiness is had by Mary, her departed mother, and her stepmother (who also happens to be her aunt). But if you like bloody dismemberment in your horror comics, there is a much larger bookend story going on that does feature the severed head of someone who had it coming…
For the most part, the horror genre is not something I dive into that often, simply because the blood and guts that are found in such books, tends to be over-the-top gore-porn that just doesn’t sit well with me. This issue keeps the murder and mayhem turned down, and I actually like the Twilight Zone vibe that generally accompanies Zenescopes offerings. The turn and the twist in this issue were nice surprises that I didn’t see coming, and I think readers will enjoy them as much as I did. Ralph Tedesco took on the writing duties this issue, with the story coming from the combined minds of Joe Brusha, Tedesco, and Josh Gorfain. Some might think knocking out a story like this is pretty easy task, but to turn it completely around at the end shows that horror stories don’t always have to end up with everyone dead.
SPLIT ON THE ART
Here’s the best part about the art; it doesn’t overly sexualize the high school girls sleeping over at Mary’s house. Yes, the women are all thin and aren’t truly representative of various body types, but at least they aren’t wearing skimpy pajamas (or less) simply to up the sexy factor of this issue. The character of Bloody Mary is well constructed and does look menacing and scary, and I wouldn’t want to see her in the mirror staring back at me.
Sadly, that’s about it for the best parts of the art. I don’t know why, but the art duties are split right down the middle in the issue, which causes a weird shift in mood and tone halfway through the story. There is also a weird sense that at least one of the artists was modeling the characters off of one or more drawings, as side profiles of a couple of the characters look exactly alike. Mary’s father looks like a take on a Japanese video game villain, and the sudden change in the style of how a character is drawn (Mary goes from normal hair part to Farrah Fawcett bangs literally overnight) is too off-putting for me. That’s not to say the overall quality is bad, I was just disappointed to see the split in style and art direction.
BOTTOM LINE: BUY IT FOR THE STORY
I went in to Grimm Tales of Terror #7 expecting terrible horror movie tropes at every turn of the page, but came out on the other side pleasantly surprised. The tale is solid, and I wouldn’t mind reading another issue featuring the creative talents of the writers. The art is good, but the sudden flip halfway through the issue is a let down, especially when the look of the characters changes like it does. Bottom line: buy this book if you like horror tales that don’t get too grim and gritty.