The X-Files Case Files: Hoot Goes There #1

Writers: Joe and Keith Lansdale
Artist: Silvia Califano
Colorist: Valentina Pinto
Letterer: Shawn Lee
Publisher: IDW

Review by Anelise Farris

IDW has gifted us with another mini-series to celebrate the 25th anniversary of The X-Files: The X-Files Case Files: Hoot Goes There #1. Here, Scully and Mulder head to Texas to investigate a woman’s disappearance. And, right away we are thrust into the mystery. It opens up in a trailer park, at night, with a giant WAAAAAAAAAH lettered across the page, as Miss Burdet (our soon-to-be missing woman) goes out to find the source of the noise.

However, it’s not just your average disappearance (obviously, this is The X-Files!). Rumor has it that the woman was kidnapped by a creature that looks like a giant owl. Mr. Sacks, her neighbor and also the town drunk, is the only one that saw the incident—and claiming that a giant owl wearing sneakers took her away doesn’t exactly scream probable. That said, this is one weird town. The sheriff’s office is literally a donut shop. There is a lot of local folklore about an owl witch. And, no one seems all that that surprised about the incident—other than Mulder and Scully, of course.

The writing is sharp, well-paced, and faithful to Mulder and Scully’s characters. But I think it is the art that really shines in this issue as it works double-time to convey horror, mystery, and humor. In short, the art is what tells the story here—more so than the actual writing. There is a ton of cool shading, moody colors, and energetic movement lines. And the realistic facial expressions are spot on. My favorite panel in the whole issue is absolutely the one in which Mulder is holding up a “Grab Our Balls” shirt with a deputy donut dog on it. Priceless.

Verdict: Buy it.

Although the writing here is lacking a bit, the art and general plot of The X-Files Case Files: Hoot Goes There #1 makes it a fun summer read.  

Anelise Farris
Anelise is an english professor with a love for old buildings, dusty tomes, black turtlenecks, and all things macabre and odd.

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