That old adage “be careful what you wish for” might seem cliche but it’s an effective way to preface the situation podcaster Serena Biggs finds herself in. Longing to be taken seriously as an online journalist, Serena takes a chance at looking into the mysterious dealings of a high-profile conglomerate, only to find herself a target. Enter Sprout, an odd, socially unaware young woman with a mysterious agenda of her own. Armed with a Polaroid camera, a gun, and a pair of heart-shaped sunglasses, this mute maybe-assassin might be Serena’s best (and only) hope.
Klik Klik Boom is not an easy book to describe. Writer Doug Wagner veers so far away from info-dumping to cause an information deficit. This mostly works in the book’s favor as Sprout’s mission and her intent is almost as much a mystery to the readers as it is to Serena. A brief sequence showing Sprout with her doomsday-prepper grandpa add some layers to Sprout’s character and offer only a hint at her potentially tragic backstory. The bulk of the narrative is driven by Serena, while the quirky Sprout is more of a colorful force of nature.
Casual readers would probably describe the art as ugly – this couldn’t be further from the truth. Doug Dabbs’ work is beautiful in a gritty, grounded sense, with characters that look, move, and act like real people. Sprout’s wardrobe resembles pieces that Harley Quinn might have dropped off at Goodwill while her hair shifts from shock-pink curls to electric blue spikes. Her overall appearance is equally off-putting and adorable, her expressions ranging from weird and creepy to pitiable and heart-breaking. Colorist Matt Wilson complements Dabbs’ work with his trademark brilliance. Visually the book looks more like an old-school Vertigo title than the splashy books Image is mostly known for and that’s not a bad thing.