Scott Snyder & Greg Capullo Share Their Cosmic Showdown in We Have Demons #1

We Have Demons brings the minds behind Batman’s legendary New 52 run to a thick and stunning story that horror fans will love.

The original ComiXology We Have Demons is making its print debut with Dark Horse Comics, bringing the horror-fantasy hellscape to a whole new audience. Co-created by writer Scott Snyder and penciler Greg Capullo, the comic also features the talents of Jonathan Glapion on inks, Dave McCaig on colors, and Tom Napolitano on letters. Reunited after their legendary New 52 Batman run, Snyder and Capullo have created a new dark and twisted world that makes Gotham look like a utopia, complete with demons.

The opening of We Have Demons #1 immediately sets the tone as apocalyptic, throwing up a half-mocking trigger warning for violence and religious faith. After spending a page in the present day, the narrative almost immediately launches into a circuitus route through two origin stories. A pastor’s daughter Lam chronologically describes her childhood, her father, the mysterious breakdown of their relationship, and moving on to college. Ella’s trajectory of her life is broken by the sudden death of her estranged father and a chance discovery in her hometown of her that will finally reveal the true nature of her work. Lam is finally induced into the true struggle for Earth, between light and dark forces beyond human comprehension. Winding back around to the present, it is Lam’s turn for her to plant a stake in her father’s war, although the side she chooses will have surprises of her own.

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Although holistically very strong, from the outset Snyder’s writing has an overt feeling of edginess to it, which some readers might find a little off-putting. However, once the flavor of the rest of the comic starts to come through the tone really flows, and by the end of the issue, it is absolutely central to the comic’s narrative voice. Divided into three chapters, the length of the comic gives the content room to breathe and methodically set out its unique and intriguing twist on Abrahamic mythology, with several novel concepts that will be exciting to revisit in greater detail. This comic is Snyder working at his peak, making massive creative choices and setting up a huge operatic narrative to build his plot around, with the effortlessness of a master.

Capullo and Glapion are collaborating on the art, and it shines through in the incredible quality and visual detail invested into every page of We Have Demons #1. Giving the long-time art team freedom to work independently on pencils and inking has allowed them to create an intricate and idiosyncratic style, which is brutal and beautiful in equal measure. Capullo’s pencil work allows the art to capture a huge amount of complexity and texture that renders each panel a masterpiece. Glapion’s talent is showcased fabulously throughout the comic, with strident inking that emboldens the art without making it any less elaborate and a great eye for fundamentals like anatomy and backgrounds.

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McCaig’s colors contribute massively to the issue gelling together as well as it does. Moving rapidly between places and times, the colors communicate each setting and its distinctive atmosphere with effortless excellence, letting the story move at a break-neck pace without losing the reader’s engagement for a second. McCaig also does some brilliant character work, juxtaposing colors within a single panel to add to the storytelling. When Lam confronts her father de ella, she is bathed in a balmy natural light, whereas her dad de ella is thrown into a muted, almost sickly hue, to great visual and metaphorical effect.

Napolitano’s work on letters is similarly brilliant in a whole host of ways. His textual work of him on the opening page does a huge amount to elevate the writing and start to build a sense of atmosphere, which is echoed later in his depiction of Demon’s speech of him. The mottled and stylized letters are visually awesome and totally creepy. Napolitano also has a great understanding of dialogue and does a lot to tease out the nuances of the writing with his use of emphasis.

We Have Demons #1 is unbelievably good for fans of horror, mayhem, and cosmic showdowns between good and evil. Gruesome with an in-your-face attitude and a thrillingly huge storytelling scope, this comic will leave readers hungry as Hell for the next issue.

KEEP READING: We Have Demons Unveils Line of Haunting Covers by a Roster of All-Star Artists

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