Vinyl #1 starts off with lots of blood and gore and ends with the promise of more to come in 12-Gauge Comics’ new original story about a serial killer with a penchant for physical media and the songs pressed upon them. The story opens up with a retired FBI agent named Dennis getting kidnapped by a cult of femme fatale flower children in front of Walter, whom Dennis is supposed to arrest. Believing the two are the best of friends, Walter decides to follow after
Dennis and his would-be captors, confronting the leader and giving her a chance to play by his rules. When she doesn’t, well, it looks like all hell is about to break loose.
Storywise, Vinyl’s got it all, which can either be a blessing or a curse. A serial killer. Sordid love affairs. A serial killer (yes, I mentioned that before) who wears a creepy Teddy bear mask. A death cult for female empowerment. And on top of a promising storyline, Doug Wagner’s writing reads as seamless as the single groove of a record’s A-side, and on the flip side, Daniel Hillyard’s crisp, clean artwork, sharply colored by Dave Stewart, adds a depth and texture to all the horrors we see, and even those we haven’t; it’s truly lovely to look at––even (especially?) the gory bits, and there are quite a few blood spatters splashed about in this very quick read.
By the end of this premiere issue, these masterful creators leave us with an immediate need to uncover what happens next. Perhaps this book should have been a straight-up graphic novel, because waiting a whole month before the next issue seems like a crime!
For all you serial killer fans out there, this book is for you. Snag a copy of Vinyl #1 the way Walter here might prefer his comics––in print––or digitally, because as long as you experience Vinyl, you’re bound to enjoy it.
Doug Wagner (W), Daniel Hillyard (A), Dave Stewart (C), Ed Dukeshire (L), Sasha E. Head (D) • Image Comics, $3.99
Review by John T. Trigonis