Weavers #1 Review
Written by Simon Spurrier
Illustrated by Dylan Burnett
Colored by Triona Farrell
Lettered by Jim Campbell
Review by John Dubrawa
Mob stories are difficult to execute with any kind of originality–what with cinema all but draining that narrative well ages ago–but fortunately the comics medium opens up entirely new and unconventional paths for creators to take. That’s certainly the case for Weavers #1, the promising kick-off of a new creator-owned miniseries from the warped mind of writer Simon Spurrier. Spurrier twists what’s a fairly standard mobster movie setup into something more akin to a horror flick but with somewhat of a superhero origin bent to it. If it sounds bizarre, it is, and it’s the type of oddity that could only exist in the comics medium.
You want weird, try this on for size: Weavers operates in a world where one of the leading crime syndicates (appropriately called The Weavers) happens to be possessed by spiders granting them supernatural abilities. Our narrative window into this world is Sid Thyme, that “just a guy” who was in the wrong place at the wrong time when one of these superpower-granting spiders chose him as its next host after leaving the body of a fallen Weaver. In this first issue, Spurrier mostly operates within a familiar trope of the new guy needing to prove to the mob that he’s loyal to their cause, and in certain spots feels as though he’s running through other familiar mobster plot points as well, such as the potential love interest for Sid that also happens to be the mob boss’ daughter. When Spurrier focuses on the more horrific elements of the narrative, though, like the mysterious Ms. Ketter, that’s when the series demonstrates its best potential moving forward.
Those horror elements succeed due in large part to Dylan Burnett’s startling artwork. Those that enjoy the stylings of Ben Templesmith or Jock will find a lot to appreciate in Burnett’s design for Weavers. From panel one there’s a palpable eeriness to the book, and Burnett only raises that feeling tenfold by the time the issue closes out. Seeing how The Weavers powers manifest themselves is particularly unsettling, and the smear of colors from Triona Farrell on the page only accentuates that feeling further. One artistic choice that doesn’t work, however, is in Jim Campbell’s lettering, which is stylized in such a way that it is at times difficult to read, especially the opening panels. For a book with an already dark color palette, the smaller, warped text (that also happens to be gray) tends to gets lost in the shadows.
Buy It. Although this first issue of Weavers tends to be a little on the familiar side for a mobster story, the horror elements have the potential to add a very interesting flavor to this series moving forward. It’s also, in a twisted way, a bit of a superhero origin in the way The Weavers are chosen, like Spiderman or Blue Beetle but way more horrific. If you’re a fan of something like Top Cow’s The Darkness, Weavers sits pretty comfortably in that wheelhouse. Plus it’s Simon Spurrier so you know it’s only going to get weirder.