Review: Short Hand #1

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Oscar is an 80 year old, retired detective who longs to return to his former career. When he disappears, Deputy Woods investigates Oscar’s past and discovers he is not the man he appears to be.

short hand coverToday we’ve got another review of a comic from Comixology’s Submit releases. This one is a detective story with a whole lot of heart. Short Hand in The Toothless Fairy is written by Jason McNamara with illustrations by Rahsan Ekedal. When a little old man gets his ankle monitor checked by two cops as a part of his probation, a series of events are set in motion that will lead to a pretty big revelation. Does Short Hand impress, or does it come up…short?

This will be a short summary. The book features one of the biggest, emotional, and shocking plot twists I’ve seen in a comic for a very long time. I saw it coming only a few panels before the reveal. Mr. Oscar Lindstat is a diminutive 80 year old man who is under house arrest. Two cops come to check on him because his ankle monitor stopped working the previous night. Oscar is a witty, wise-cracking former detective who is trying to jump back into the detective game. He’s a pain in the posterior to the cops, but you can’t help to like the crotchety little guy. Through some impressive tricks he gets free of the ankle monitor and sets off to investigate a case involving some missing dentures in an old folk’s home. Deputy Woods checks Oscar’s records to see what he’s on probation for and finds the answer is surprising.

McNamara writes an absolutely stellar story. It’s a fantastic detective story, character piece, and emotional rollercoaster. It’s hard to talk about it without revealing the twist, so let’s say he’s done a heck of a job and he really punches you in the emotions. The final pages are heartbreaking but so good. The book is full of humor due to the characters and the situations, it’s not as sappy as I’m making it sound. Ekedal’s art is just as great as McNamara’s story. He brings each character to life wonderfully and the attention to detail is spectacular.

Bottom Line: Go to Comixology and buy this right now. I’ve read a lot of great stories on Comixology’s Submit releases, but this is easily in the top three. I usually get a lot wordier in reviews, but it’s hard to talk about this without spoiling the twist. Go read it and come back and tell me how right I was. There’s a teaser for a new story, and I can’t wait to read it. 5/5



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