Solving a murder is tough. Solving a murder in a traveling circus, with a demon infestation? That’s even moreso. Your Major Spoilers review of Spectacle #7 awaits!
Writer: Megan Rose Gedris
Artist: Megan Rose Gedris
Colorist: Megan Rose Gedris
Editor: Ari Yarwood
Publisher: Oni Press
Cover Price: $1.99
Release Date: August 8, 2018
Previously in Spectacle: Pragmatic engineer Anna works as a psychic in the Samson Brothers Circus, but she doesn’t believe in anything supernatural – until her twin sister Kat is murdered and comes back as a very demanding ghost. Sharing a room with her sister was hard, but now they’re sharing a body while trying to identify the killer. With few leads, a troupe full of secretive folk, and strange paranormal occurrences popping up around the circus, solving the case seems near impossible.
But the murderer in their midst may be the least of their problems.
EXCITING RIGHT OUT OF THE GATE
This issue opens with fortune-teller Anna startled awake by her sister’s voice… her deceased sister’s voice! The voice of Kat cries for her to run away as the demon (which we the readers can see, but Anna cannot) which has been plaguing their circus is right upon her. Anna rushes out in a panic, and ends up falling asleep in one of the circus train cars. When she awakens, she and the rest of the circus discover that roughneck Gus has mutated in the night, growing a second face on the back of his head. He’s not the only one changing, though, as Anna’s friend Flora the snake-charmer has developed scaly arms with serpent-like fingers, and all the new mutated people end up under the auspices of Eve and Lynn, unofficial queen’s of circus freakshow and conjoined twins who have a serious problem with attitude. Anna starts to suspect them of the murders plaguing the company, but before she can talk Flora into going undercover with them, another body turns up.
I LOVE THIS ART
There’s something wonderful about a truly unique art style, and Gedris really impresses me in the pages of Spectacle #7. Her art conveys emotional moments really well, gives everyone unique body and facial shapes (even the twins!) and most of all, it’s full of energy. The scene where Anna discovers that one of the horses has grown human hands is at once eerie and weirdly cute, and the design of the terrible demon is truly creative and terrifying. In concert with the engaging story, Spectacle #7’s art drew me in completely, submerging me in the world of the Samson Brother Circus, evoking the holy grail of film weirdos like me, Tod Browning’s ‘Freaks’ while giving everyone heart and character. (Even the jerks, like judgy, gossipy Millie, who taunts Anna that she’ll be the next freak.) It also has moments that took me by surprise, something that isn’t always guaranteed when you’ve been reading sequential art and comic books as long as I have. I’m very happy to say this book did unexpected things and did them all well.
BOTTOM LINE: KIND OF AMAZING
There’s a phrase that I use on the Major Spoilers Podcast, borrowed from my musical hero Michael Nesmith, to describe a certain quality of reading experience: “Rush right out in a buying frenzy!” Spectacle #7 hits that sweet spot, to the point where not only am I going to be finding the back issues, I may be following the story as it is released at spectaclecomic.com and I frankly recommend that you get on board as well, as this issue ranks a well-deserved 4.5 out of 5 stars overall. It’s a really good, really engaging book.