Tuesday, September 5, 2023

"The Devil's Cut," is a Strong Start for DSTLRY

DSTLRY is a new publisher with plans to release a variety of creator-owned comics, as well as collectibles. They've done some weird stuff with digital scarcity that are not NFTs, but still strange (you can only buy a digital copy of stuff to a certain date then it is gone or something unless you resell a digital copy to someone else) and have hyped up how their first one-shot, "The Devil's Cut," will never be reprinted but all that silly buzz aside I was curious about the aforementioned debut one-shot they released this past Wednesday. It's an anthology of short stories and previews and having read it, my interest is piqued in DSTLRY's possible future offerings.

"The Devil's Cut," is itself an impressive comic. It looks like an oversized magazine with an eye-catching cover by Jock (other covers look neat too) that just begs a reader to open it up and check it out. Then you dive in and see it is an anthology book with shorter stories, that can inspire some worries. Anthology comics are practically by law a mixed bag. You get a mix of good and bad, with the hope being that there is enough great stuff you can forgive the yarns that are lacking. From reading, "The Devil's Cut," I can say no stories were atrocious and certain ones were quite cool. 

I'm down with the first part, okay with the second, a bit befuddled by the third.

When it comes to what I dug in, "The Devil's Cut," certain shorts stick out. A futuristic thief story by Jock titled, "The Stowaway," looked gorgeous as anything by Jock is wont to do. "What Happens Next," by Jamie McKelvie (writer and artist) and Aditya Bidikar as the letterer is a snazzy sci-fi yarn. The best of the bunch in my opinion, however, was, "White Boat," by Scott Snyder and Francesco Fancavilla with Andworld Design as the letterer and Tyler Jennes as a story assistant. It's a creepy horror tale that feels right out of a good episode of, "The Twilight Zone," and hits the reader hard. Those stories were quite fun.

"The Devil's Cut," is an impressive first release from DSTLRY. I'm not big on the whole digital scarcity thing they are hyping but I'm totally down for big, well-written, and gorgeous comics done by fantastic creators who own the rights to their creations and see a profit from them as opposed to being mistreated by a publisher. Should you be in the mood for some wild narratives I'd recommend picking up, "The Devil's Cut," from your local comic shop.

5 out of 5 stars.

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