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Krampus! #1

Writer: Brian Joines

Artist: Dean Kotz

Colorist: Ron Riley

Review Patrick Brennan

Humor me, kind readers, and picture this.  You’re are a child once more, it’s the weeks leading up to Christmas, and you’re in the midst of performing a terrible array of wicked and mean-spirited acts the likes of which the world has never seen.  When the worn-out threat of Santa not appearing on December 25th is eventually used by your poor shell-shocked parents, you scoff in their faces.  “Yeah right, idiots” you say.  Unfortunately for you, Santa was listening and so was a close friend of his: a devious, naughty-child-smiting monster known as the Krampus.

Krampus cover 1Straight out of the folk stories that birthed this Evil Santa, and showcasing a tapestry woven from Christmas legends and jolly gift-givers from cultures found around the world, comes issue #1 of Krampus!  from Brian Joines. It’s the story of a demon who, after spending the better part of 60 years imprisoned by the Secret Society of Santa Clauses, is set loose by his captors after the bones of the first Santa are stolen by the devilish Sugar Plum Fairies.  The society receives all their magic from these bones, you see, and without them they won’t be able to bring Christmas to all the noble inhabitants of their respective jurisdictions.  So it’s up to the Krampus to stop them and save….well, you can probably guess the rest.

Krampus! #1 delightful, pure and simple, and is a wonderful holiday read for anyone trying to find a comic to drop in their laps this yuletide season that isn’t your run-of-the-mill sappy Christmas tripe. Underneath all its wacky reimaginings of the holiday traditions we all know lies a darker edge, thanks to Joines’ clever and wry storytelling, giving this opening chapter some welcomed bite.  Dean Kotz’s art compliments this beautifully, making it look like a deranged Disney flick in all the best ways possible.  It’s a good creative pairing, to be sure.

The only real concern I had while reading Krampus! #1 was in this question: when the next issue comes out after Christmas is over and the holiday novelty has worn off, will it still be a book that is interesting enough to read?  Well, if it’s as engaging as this debut, the odds are significantly high that it will please.  I mean, who doesn’t want Christmas to last just a little longer when it’s all over with?

Verdict:

Buy It – Looking for an entertaining and darkly funny story to read this holiday season?  Then look no further than Krampus! #1.  Featuring a fun take on the old folk tale creature of the same name, jokes that actually hit their mark, and some fantastic art, this book is a hoot.  Wow, I sounded like I was 90 years old there.  Oh well.

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