Getting a new #1 comic from creators and a publisher you dig is like getting a big present for your birthday. You're not quite sure what inside the pretty wrapping and you can't help but be excited to rip it open and find out. Gail Simone and Jon Davis-Hunt set up a creepy stage with their new psychological thriller.
One of the great things about the vibe of the story is how, despite having supernatural elements, it feels rooted in the real world. That's part of the charm with some Vertigo books. Even though we're completely unfamiliar with the characters when we open the issue, you find yourself immediately pulled in and concerned for the well being of them. There's a great mixture of character development with Davis-Hunt's art that just pulls you in.
When it comes to the darker types of stories, you expect them to literally be dark. Jon Davis-Hunt provides the colors as well as the art and they're pretty vibrant. At the same time, you can feel the darkness trying to ooze out in between.
The story focuses on a journalist named Chloe. Her fiancé came across a self-help book, became invested in the author and her organization, and ended up killing himself within months. As Chloe tries to deal with this loss and more, we see her determined to get closer to the author and the mystery behind her entire organization. It's one of those situations where you feel like yelling at the character to just stop or turn around. All the while the art just kicks in all the emotions and fears without relying on gimmicky shock-value imagery.
Gail Simone's first Vertigo issue sets up a lot. We're off to a great start and you'll definitely want to know what's coming up and what will happen next. Jon Davis-Hunt's art and colors are a perfect match for the story and creates a really nice tone. As this is a set up issue, there is a bit going on and it's obvious the pacing of future issues will change. There were some moments it felt things jumped a bit and quickly built up to the cliffhanger ending. Even though we have so many great titles available on comic shelves each week, I'm happy to add CLEAN ROOM to my reading list. Simone and Davis-Hunt have given us a nice and juicy story that allows you to momentarily escape reality as you get pulled into this freaky world.