Review by Ian Keogh
There are monsters who’ve existed a long time, and humanity in general is ignorant of just how prevalent they are, which doesn’t really hold true when an entire town has seen a dozen children disappear and die, and similar incidents have occurred elsewhere. If that’s occurred to anyone reading the earlier volumes, James Tynion IV provides a reason it remains secret. Perhaps fortunately, the House of Slaughter is there to deal with the monsters, but the jury’s still out on the fortunate part. Erica Slaughter has arrived in Archer’s Creek, later followed by a colleague, and despite their best efforts all hell broke loose at the end of Volume Two.
Piece by piece Tynion is gradually building a mythology around the monsters in Something is Killing the Children and those who hunt them down. Until now he’s used the drip feed method, only slowly revealing any particulars, but readers have eyes, and not everything needs to be spelled out to come to a judgement about who the good guys are. Here the medicine is proving worse than the illness, and an awful lot is revealed before the end.
Buckets of blood are back on the agenda for Werther Dell’Edera, and his compact design for the monster pays off in the action scenes here. He’s great with the movement of Erica dancing around the creatures, avoiding their limbs and with how the monsters lurk, although he doesn’t have them move much, but then doesn’t have to. They’re threatening enough as they are.
This brings the first arc of Something is Killing the Children to a close very satisfactorily. Tynion is still managing to surprise, and there’s a solution to the problem of explaining what happened to the killed children, but it’s tragic. There’s some real quality here, and as such you may want to consider picking up the first arc in hardback as Something is Killing the Children Book One.