To say that Stanley is down on his luck would be an understatement. As he tries to stand up on his own two feet, life continually kicks him down–be it his dead-end job or his cheating girlfriend. But you have to make sacrifices to keep the things you love, right? However, life takes a turn for Stanley when a cry break in the company bathroom turns into a full-on demon possession. And after this long-dormant demon lord wreaks havoc through Stanley’s body, Stanley decides to get an exorcism on the cheap. But when the discount exorcism removes the demon but leaves all of its powers, Stanley is suddenly one Lucky Devil.
If I had to give you a quick, one-sentence explanation of what to expect from this book, I’d tell you it’s basically Fight Club where Tyler Durden is an actual demon instead of the other side of a split personality. There’s a lot of parallels between Lucky Devil and Fight Club, right down to the sobriety meeting where Stanley tells his story. Do the similarities hurt Lucky Devil? Not one bit.
Almost anyone can identify with a story where the protagonist feels like the world is against him, and after the year that was 2020, I’m sure those feelings are all-too raw in any reader. Watching Stanley’s possessed body go on a blood-soaked rampage is equal parts horrific and cathartic. And the concept behind a hole-in-the-wall exorcist not doing the job to completion adds a unique element to the story that is sure to play a huge part in subsequent issues. The demon lord Zedirex (or “Zed”) may be out of Stanley’s body, but he’s not out of his life, and that sets up some delicious tension down the road. Cullen Bunn may have borrowed from Chuck Palahniuk in some ways, but in other ways, Fight Club walked so that Lucky Devil could run, especially given those final three words at the end of this first issue.
Fran Galán’s artwork is near perfect for the type of story he and Bunn are conjuring. The sharp lines, different textures, and caricaturized designs evoke Rob Guillory’s masterful work in Chew. The grotesque moments have a hint of comedic brilliance, and the coloring adds emphasis and urgency to every emotion of the comic.
Lucky Devil #1 certainly hits with a lot of the same punches we’ve grown to love from Fight Club, but the best is yet to come. With his newly-acquired powers–and enemies–Stanley’s journey in Lucky Devil promises to be a hell of a ride.