Review: Mysteries of the Arcana!

8th March 2009

Mysteries of the Arcana by J Gray (art by Keith W.)

Although still early in the story, this comic has already become compelling. We have seen several characters make appearances, the world(s) is already taking shape and its incredibly intriguing. Personally the attention to detail in the settings adds to the already building curiousity. The instant we see the machine we want to know why, who, what- in fact the novel introduction to our first real character is unusual in itself. Hopefully this won’t spoil your enjoyment of the story thus far but when we see Theresa for the first time, we’re full of questions- is she a major character? If so why is she about to kill herself? What happened to her family? Did she run away or is there nothing to run away from?

J Gray manages to do some thing that is incredibly tricky to balance and the artist, Keith, really does help here too, and thats to balance those questions so that curiousity it piqued but without infuriating the audience with piling on information, or the lack of answers to those questions. Instead of driving the audience mad with these questions we’re sucked into the world and really want to know more, and to learn about this world and its people just as Theresa herself does.

Whilst characters such as Blue (the sentient viscous liquid that lives in a space suit) bear striking resemblance to certain characters from Hellboy it feels perfectly acceptable that such creatures should exist in this world- especially when we see reptilian creatures, faeries and invisible men idly chatting in the background. The depth of the world that J. has created is astounding and really draws you in.

If you aren’t already convinced that you really should take a look, have a quick read through (the archive is still in its infancy at the moment so it won’t take long), then I don’t know how else to convince you. If you’re into elves, mythical creatures, tarot, magic or LGBT comics or even if you just want to be taken some where new then a comic with all of that and the potential to travel to 78 different universes- what more could you ask for?

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