Advanced Review: Ocean City

Review by David Ferguson

Created by Colm Griffin
Lettering by Alice Coleman

What struck me first when this book was announced was, of course, the cover. It is a great piece of art and a pretty intriguing image. It stands out and it does a great job of selling what the book is about. It immediately brings to mind the idea of a city trapped, broken and where you will see blood flow. It, maybe even just on a subliminal level, sets the story up in the reader’s mind. After reading the book, I have even more praise for it as it really gives you the tone of the book as well.  It also says “buy this book”. This is comic book 101 but is an often overlooked concept in comics nowadays.  This issue is about world building so there was a danger of over-explanation and being dialogue heavy. Happily, Colm Griffin includes a lot of action scenes to set up the story and veers on the side of show not tell. Dialogue is left to what will drive the story. He also leaves something for the reader to ponder for now as he sets up a few plot threads to resolved in future issues. His art has more of a cartoony that I originally felt would play well to a all ages book but he manages to shape it into a style that works for the story. Even the darker elements. The book centres on Dillon King , a resident of Ocean City, who lives with his grandmother. She acts as narrator for the issue which looks at what happened to Ocean City to put it in his current state. I’m a fan of dystopian future comics and the story had enough original elements to keep me interested and looking forward to seeing where it goes. One character in particular intrigues in particular. You’ll probably figure out which one pretty easily if you read the book which you should. If I was to give it a one line summary it would be: What if you lived in Astro City and what if it all went wrong? I’m on board for more.

Ocean City launches at Forbidden Planet Dublin on March 7th. You can check out the details on the Facebook event page.