Tuesday, August 19, 2003

The Restless Season

I had done some work for Fleshrot: Book of the Dead for Frightworld Studios not too long ago. It shows the half rotting face of a man in the rain. To be honest, that piece of work I did is ten years old. It was supposed to be a cover for Mass Media's Terror Comics. But it got rejected, not because it sucks (I happen to really like that drawing), but because someone else had turned in a very similar looking cover ahead of me, so they won't be able to use mine. So the drawing sat there for nearly 10 years and I didn't know what to do with it. When John Pearson contacted me about doing something for Fleshrot, I thought about giving this artwork to him for publication in the book.

When my complimentary copies arrived a few weeks ago, my eye was immediately drawn to a short story about a rat named Li-Gui rat and a bird named Fan-Chong bird. The story, entitled "The Restless Season", was written and painted by Socar Myles, a writer-artist I've not heard of before then. The art is really beautiful, even in black and white. It has a dreamy, ethereal kind of quality to it that seems out of place at first in a gore-filled zombie comics anthology. I was busy inking Superman at the time and as a deadline was looming, I knew I didn't have the time to read anything. But for some reason, there was something about this story that demanded my attention and that it just had to be read. So I just dropped everything and just sat to read it.

After I had finished the 10 page story, I thought that was one of the most moving, beautiful, poignant, albeit twisted stories I've read in a long time. It's quite haunting as well because images of Fan-Chong bird and Li-Gui rat danced in the back of my mind as I inked, as I ate, and as I took a bath. If this is truly the work of a newcomer in comics, then it's a remarkable piece of work. The artwork, beautiful as it is, is quite professionally done, and the writing poetic, lyrical and dreamlike.

I strongly recommend to anyone who reads this, buy Fleshrot! if only for this story alone. I guarrantee it's worth the whole book. I forsee great things in store for Socar Myles. This writer-artist has the potential to do great stories and the comics companies would be losing big if they pass this burgeoning talent by. Visit Socar Myles' site here.

The artwork above is from The Restless Season by Socar Myles.