Writer: Marco B. Bucci
Artist/Colorist: Jacopo Camagni
Letterer: Fabio Emelia
Publisher: Image Comics
It’s time for the annual harvest of comics about witchcraft, the occult, and dark magic that hit the shelves in October. Like a famished trick-or-treater, I eagerly tuck into this feast of dark fables every year, but you’re bound to get a few cans of RC Cola among your full-sized candy bars. To kick off this year’s comics ritual, I cracked open Nomen Omen #1, which bills itself as “a tale filled with witchcraft and secrets that will rewire the rules of urban fantasy.”
As an urban fantasy enthusiast, that’s a pretty strong claim. It can be hard for witchy comics to set themselves apart when the shelves overflow as Halloween looms, but this 15-issue maxiseries is translated from the Italian bestseller by Panini Comics, so it has a leg up on the competition with a proven track record. So, does Nomen Omen #1 conjure a unique tale, or should it be offered to the dark gods in ritual sacrifice?
This comic surprised me more than once, which is what I’m looking for in a first issue. It starts by ticking some familiar boxes: a dark wood, a mysterious quiet death, bloody runes on a pregnant woman. But then it takes a turn, and another, and it ends where you least expected it, right when you think Becky’s story is about to begin. I was completely hooked from cover to cover, and the villain is one worthy of this comic’s dark atmosphere.
With Camagni doing both line art and colors, there’s an inherent relationship between the two. The art is fantastic; the last pages especially were utterly captivating- – so many little details contributing to the eerie worldbuilding. The colors have a strong and unique emphasis, and its use is tied to the characters. This comic is poised to explore some interesting possibilities in how the colors and the plot intermingle.
Well, I suppose you could go read the original in Italian if you really want to know if the story will hold up, but I can safely say Nomen Omen #1 is worth adding to your October haul this year.
Nomen Omen #1 will be available in comic shops on October 2, 2019.