Writer: Pornsak Pichetshote
Artist: Aaron Campbell
Colorist: Jose Villarrubia
Letterer: Jeff Powell
Publisher: Image Comics
Review by Greg Brothers
Horror comics are an interesting genre for me. I find that I enjoy horror comics, but rarely am I truly creeped out by them. Infidel #1, however, sent a chill down my spine several times while I was reading it.
Aisha has recently moved into a new apartment with her husband and step-child. The rent in the apartment is cheap (never a good sign in a horror book). While things are going well with her husband and step-child, the same cannot be said for her neighbors. They neither trust nor particularly like Aisha. In addition, recently she has been having nightmares. Not the a robber is chasing me type nightmares, but the demon shadow creakers pinning you against the wall type. Unfortunately for Aisha, those nightmares may be only the tip of the iceberg.
The thing that really stands out from the beginning of the book is how realistic these characters and their environment is. Aisha feels like a typical professional woman in her late twenties who is trying to deal with becoming a step-mother. The panels in which her nightmares materialize there is a real sense of fear within not only the look but her reaction also. As a reader, I never felt as if Aisha was ever truly safe. Even in panels in which Aisha is doing something as simple as spending time with her step-child, it feels as if a demon could slip out of the shadows at any moment.
Part of that fear of Aisha’s safety comes into play with her environment and those around her. Pichetshote ups the fear factor by increasing the Xenophobia. While we get an idea of why some of the tension is high in the apartment, many of the looks and reactions of neighbors feel as if they would exist in the real world.
While the writing helps lead to a constant state of fear. It is the art that really ramps up those images that will keep you up at night. Campbell changes it up throughout Infidel #1. In one panel you might have a blood red demon stalking Aisha. Meanwhile the next panel may seem innocent but with a slight shift in the shadowing to unveil an unknown horror. The grit within gives the feel of watching an old 8mm horror movie, one where the inconsistencies within the panel allow you to wonder what you may have just seen.
Verdict: Buy it.
Infidel #1 has some flaws as far as the story goes. Some of the exposition within the book drags a bit, but the panels in which Aisha feels like she is in true danger quickly snap you back into the story. The art team here works in perfect harmony as the designs, colors, and even lettering provide a truly spine-tingling tale.