Once again its the beginning of the week, and that makes it time for my recommendation and this week its themed. Incase you dont know it was Wrestlemania 30 yesterday, which is the biggest wrestling even of the year and a huge spectacle for many fans so this week im featuring a short run comic book that focuses on a a lead character who is a wrestler: The Nail by Rob Zombie.
This is one of Rob Zombies first forays into the world of comic book writing, and from a man who is better known for his music and his movies this was a real gamble. However with everything relating to Rob Zombie its a gamble from DarkHorse comics that truly paid of, as this joint venture in writing between Zombie and Steve Niles produced a comic book that is not only a good read but is a well written and fully engaging tale.
The story focuses on Rex Hauser a semi-pro wrestler, Hauser has been touring the country performing at small-time arenas until the fateful night he and his family run afoul of a bloodthirsty gang of Satanic bikers stalking the North Dakota Badlands. This is the beginning of a tale that’s is dark and relentless in its portrayal of horror, as the town of Hunted and Rex gets preyed upon by and evil that never sleeps and the full forces of Hell itself. The story unfolds in the horror from the beginning, and as you’d expect from both Zombie and Niles holds absolutely nothing back its brutality and depiction of blood and violence but its fitting to the story so never seems out-of-place or over done.
The tale is wonderfully depicted by the great work of Nat Jones on both pencils and colours, as his work really helps to portray the darkness that has descended upon the town and adding horror to each appearance of the ‘hellspawn.’ Add to this his portrayal of the Rex himself as a well built, hardened and somewhat downtrodden wrestler stuck in the situation. His pencil work on the fighting and action scenes also does wonders for the story, as every detail is captured and shown in its brutal and bloody glory.
This is a great tale of how far one man will go to try and save his family in the face of adversity (albeit extreme and unlikely) told by two masters of horror, one from the world of comics books and one from music and film, that is the prefect example of the early 2000’s independent work that Darkhorse published- and is one that needs to be read.