REVIEW: VELVET #1

Velvet #1
Written by: Stephen Coffey
Art by: Wayne Cambronero
Lettering by: Scott M Davis
Price: $2.50 (hard copy from Indyplanet) or $0.99 (PDF from  drivethru comics)
Velvet 1
 
Minimalist is the most succinct definition for Velvet #1 from Stephen Coffey, author of Celtic Knights, The Society for the Remarkable Suicide, and our very own webcomic, Pogoroboto. Minimalist is how ICN described the cover when it was revealed back in January, and after reviewing the first issue in its entirety, this seems to have been prophetic.
The cover is simply the title text against a black background. It’s oddly effective, helped by the simple font and unusual colouring. Past the cover, the artwork continues in this vein. It is illustrated throughout with a clean, simple line, and backgrounds are sparse to bare. At first I found the art to be a little too stripped back; the effect was almost jarring in its simplicity. A few pages in, though, as I got a feel for the story, and more importantly the storytelling, it all came together quite nicely for me.
Velvet #1 is the start of a revenge story, and is strictly the set-up. After his victory in a military boxing match, the secrets of Major Jonathan Kavanagh are spilled, and his comrades take his punishment into their own hands. Velvet’s sixteen pages skim the surface of this story, touching only on the main points. Stephen’s storytelling technique ties perfectly to the artwork. It is stark, more expressive than descriptive, elliptic and tight. This uniform style makes the book seem like a well thought out start to a story that will hopefully continue to impress as much as issue one did.
At just sixteen pages, Velvet #1 might seem to be a mere featherweight, but it’s a story that punches above its weight, and makes an impression on the reader. This one could be a contender.