Review: The Bunker #1
comiXology Submit titles haven’t been my flavor as of late. A few of them have been pointless derivatives of more popular books. But Josh Fialkov and Joe Infurnari’s The Bunker is simply brilliant, and leaves a lasting impression on the reader.
Fialkov skips the character introduction in favor of diving right into the plot. The little we learn about the characters is dangled in front of the reader, with each character getting a nice mystery. Most of The Bunker has been seen before in other mediums, but the framing device is used perfectly and keeps the story points feeling different from the rest. I like that Fialkov jumped right in instead of giving us a history for each character. Learning about their relationships and history of each other while figuring out the history will be that more interesting. When a book like this comes along, I usually want more information. Mostly because the story is lacking in something, and it needed more story to compensate. But Fialkov has given me almost nothing story wise, and I can’t wait to read more. I’m somewhat uninterested with the zombie angle, as they have been somewhat done to death in pop culture these days. But it could still work, so I’ll reserve my judgement.
I normally don’t mention lettering in a review, but Infurnari’s lettering added a great deal to the experience. I found myself zooming in to read the cursive handwriting, and then zooming out to find myself making the same facial reactions as the characters. Then it hit me; I’m just as confused as the characters themselves. This firmly places the reader in the shoes of the characters. Too often the reader/viewer knows more than the characters and we just wait to see when they are going to find out. But this is a subtle thing that works incredibly well. It would be easier to read if The Bunker was released in print, but it’s still easy to read on an iPad (my device of choice for digital comics).
Infurnari’s detailed artwork sets the mood as much as the writing. The apocalyptic New York is one of the more detailed representations of the city I’ve seen in some time. The tension in the bunker is completely set by Infurnari’s use of shadows and light. The slight inking change, which I didn’t notice until the second read through, is a nice touch. The present scenes are inked in black, while the future have a hint of brown to them. When a story has the potential to get confusing like LOST, which Fialkov even referenced, it’s good to be able to know who is who when looking at the page. Every character has a different look, even if it’s just the addition of glasses.
The Bunker is a fascinating read. I’m thoroughly intrigued with the title and what it could lead too. Fialkov and Infurnari have a hit on their hands.
The Bunker #1 gets 4.5/5.