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Boneyard Vol. 3

By Zak Edwards
June 12, 2010 - 10:10

Richard Moore’s comedy taking shots at the tropes of the horror continues in this third volume, which adds a few layers of complexity to a fairly simple and flat earlier attempts.  Not to say the earlier trade wasn’t good, the book is a lot of fun and certainly not trying to be anything it's not, but this third volume begins to weave in a few elements which were lacking in the previous volume.  As usual, Moore combines his cartoon style with fairly inappropriate humour, action, and good characters who are now becoming more complex.  Basically, this book has absolutely everything a reader could want in a book.  I will say quickly though, Moore’s Boneyard may look like it could be for younger readers, but I would say the series would probably need a read through before passing it over to a little comic fan.

As I said, this third volume of Boneyard adds what the book was lacking in the previous volume, mainly adding some depth to a series which was coming across as fairly shallow.  This is true for many of the major elements including narrative, plot, and characters, who are becoming increasingly more enjoyable as Moore gets the audience to know them a little better.  The issue opens with a swimsuit special, an attempt by the demon Glump to do some subliminal messaging, with fairly funny and disastrous results.  The issue before the swimsuit special is more interesting than the actual special, which is a Boneyard equivalent to an Archie beach story, a slight departure for fun and laughs, both of which occur in droves.  This ties in well with the rest of the story, which shows a sense of growing talent with the series.  If the second volume had me curious, this has me hooked.  The story, about a romantic interest of Paris's who is actually attempting to gain possession of the Boneyard, retains a sitcom style, with a plot and subplot coming together in the end, and has some complications thrown in for the budding romance between protagonist and Boneyard inheritor Michael Paris and the vampire Abbey through the use of Lilith, the aforementioned romantic interest for Michael.  Structurally, the book maintains a familiar form, with a climactic battle ending the volume, but this works with the series because of the sitcom influence.  The actual story itself, after the swimsuit special and issue tying into the swimsuit, is fairly short, but packs a surprising amount of content without feeling rushed or cramped.  Moore’s clear storytelling abilities are a great asset here.  Additionally, the major confrontation with Abbey’s nemesis Lilith adds the generic super-villain for everyone to go against, and possesses little in ways of motivation besides wanting the Boneyard and willing to kill/manipulate anything to get it.  The character is fairly disappointing because of this, as she lacks any real depth, but hopefully she will be coming back with a greater complexity, just as this volume has done with the series in general.

And never fear, the core hilarity of the series is never compromised as the series matures.  If anything, Moore’s use of single page aside jokes, combined with some serious wit and genre-specific humour, is making the series is only better in every way since earlier.  Moore’s art really shines in these moments as well, capable of communicating very clearly both the story, gags, and jokes which appear in multiple points of each page.  Moore’s style, while cartoonish, never crosses the line into absurdity without great reason.  Even during the climactic battle, the sequence still feels and looks very serious despite Moore’s style generally being used for humour.  Overall, Moore’s art does everything required of it while his writing never makes anything look out of place.

Last Updated: August 31, 2023 - 08:12

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