Cullen Bunn is no doubt a master writer of horror and suspense comics. With his hit series Harrow County, he also brought us Regression while writing heavily for Marvel currently and in the past, his latest book is Cold Spots out from Image Comics with artist Mark Torres
This contains some likely spoilers, but not all is spoiled. So if you don’t like anything that goes into details beyond the publishers description of the book, stop reading now.
The story starts off in a very typical horror suspense. You quickly learn that a couple are now all alone after they lost their boys at some point while they were still young. This sets the precedence of the cold spots, the “persnickety” weather that people are experiencing. We don’t see this couple for the remainder of the issue but perhaps Bunn sheds more light later on in the story line.
The story quickly pans over to Dan Kerr, a man we learn that specializes in finding people and things that have gone missing.
You can sense the tension between Dan and Mr. Warren upon their initial meeting. Mr Warren is the man who’s hiring Dan to locate his daughter and his granddaughter, who he emphasizes is more important than his daughter Alyssa who doesn’t seem to make very “good decisions”.
During the conversation between Dan and Mr. Warren, you’ll realize that Dan was family at some point, it’s not clear if he was married to Alyssa or they were just together, but clearly there’s some bad blood as Mr. Warren asked him to leave years ago and to never return. He only needs his help now after they’ve gone missing.
Dan for the first time sees a picture of his own daughter Grace, who he clearly never met before leaving.
After checking out his daughters room for any potential clues, he gets info from the butler that Alyssa met someone online and likely ran off to meet them. From his daughters drawings, he can depict that she drew a picture of herself with her mom, but the other people in the drawing were all shaded out, likely a clue they’ve encountered the ghostly figures themselves.
The butler knew more than he was telling anyone, particularly Mr. Warren so after Dan gets more information on their possible whereabouts, it pans over to what appears to be Dan traveling towards the coast.
Later at Dan’s first destination on his travel which is at the Quarrels Ferry Landing, he soon learns that it hasn’t run in weeks and it’s quite cold for the time of year. The ferry landing merchant tells him he can charter a boat in the morning to make it over to the island where we assume is the location the butler provided.
The ferry landing merchant we soon learn has secrets of his own, telling a ghostly figure that they must have forgiven him by coming back. During this time, Dan departed for his room but soon turns around to go speak again to the merchant about the unusual cold weather to discover that the merchant is not really himself any longer, which is a mystery to the reader as well.
This first issue is very typical for me. It’s building the story and suspense but I’m curious to see how this pans out in a mini-series. This first issue seemed it was very slow building as we don’t know a whole lot yet about the ghosts and why they’re haunting this island town but I have a feeling there’s a connection with the ghosts and Grace, Dan’s daughter.
As I’m curious to see how this plays out, the other part of me tells me to just wait for the trade to read the whole thing in one sitting. I did enjoy Mark Torres artwork though, it’s very suitable and fitting for this type of book. It sort of reminded me of Jock’s style in Wytches without all the extra color splattering over all the pages.
If you’re a fan of Cullen Bunn though, this book is right up your alley.