Written by Matt Evans and Andrew Helinski. Drawn by Nate Burns.
Casual comic readers will need strong personal convictions before delving into White Devil #1. The trio of co-creators conjured up elevated horror. It’s not cutesy Trick-or-Treat horror or the watered-down stuff found in a Hollywood movie.
The story’s set in Alabama and we first get to know a typical Southern family go through a mundane dinner. Housewife Judy decides to spice up her life by taking herself and a friend to a meeting. It’s not a book club meeting as Judy told her husband. Instead, it’s a meeting where nude regulars indulge themselves on naked women and there’s a subversive occult ritual takes place.
Judy, our plucky Southern gal, and her friend eventually leave. Their threshold? Orgiastic activity? Making upside-down crosses on everyone’s head with goat’s blood? Nope. The host interacts with Judy then abruptly ends the spectacle. Judy has had enough! However, the host did something for his troubles…
Nate Burns’ woodcut-like art adds eeriness to the setting and extra distance between me and the characters. This sleepy town in Alabama looks older than it is. The plotting by Evans and Helinski brings stark contrast between ordinary and extraordinary living. Judy’s moral bearings are left incomplete and possibly explored in the next issue.
On a technical level, I found the lettering representing Judy’s thoughts to be too tight and barely legible. Thankfully, in a PDF reader there’s the zoom function. If White Devil was a print comic then the lettering would strain eyeballs.
My recommendation is caution for very intense scenes. Readers who prefer stories of the occult will likely be riveted and will anticipate the next issue.
If you want to the full issue of White Devil #1, visit the creators’ website.