FATALE Vol 1 Review Brubaker’s Horror Noir Epic



When reporter Nick Lash discovers an unpublished book by his godfather Hank he uncovers a secret world that few have ever seen. Tracking down a woman who has been on the runs since the mid 1930’s he discovers she has not aged a day. Nick begins to learn that his godfather Hank had secrets he hid in his unpublished novel. Uncovering the truth in Hanks novel takes Nick back to the 1930’s. An occult ritual murder suicide brings two corrupt cops to the forefront on one journalist investigation. A forced in counter with Josephine, a beautiful and mysterious woman on the run, sends this reporters life spinning out of control. Hunted by the occult and the demon monster Mr. Bishop, Hank strives to protect Josephine and stop Mr. Bishop from resurrecting his Pagan god. Is the cost of saving Josephine to high? Can Nick Find the answers he is looking for?

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A timeless beauty strike’s up a conversation. She is captivating, mesmerizing, and overwhelming you with her allure. Why does she have such power over you? Josephine’s mystery is only exceeded by her danger. Ed Brubaker’s noir epic takes the reader on a journey to the other side of reality, a place from your nightmares. This is not a story for the faint of heart or the casual reader (defiantly not for children). FATALE’s complex writing and intricate characterizations are at times confusing and hard to follow. I found there were moment when I was forced to reread the page a few times to get my baring’s before I could advance in the story. That being said I enjoyed this novel. Brubaker has this way of making you feel a little uneasy throughout the whole novel. As if at any moment the evil in the story can manifest itself in the real world.

Ed Brubaker’s blend of noir style of writing and classic occult horror is riveting and suspenseful. I never knew what was coming next and at the end of novel I had just as many questions as when I began. Most of the time that is not a good thing, FATALE on the other hand left me wanting to read the next volume. Everything worked in this novel. The characters were well developed and added to the overall story. Every character Brubaker introduces plays an important part in the story.


Artist Sean Phillips illustrations adds a hauntingly beautiful aesthetic to the story. I have always been a fan of this duos work, but FATALE is their best to date. Sean Phillips is conscious of what he is willing and unwilling to show you in his art work. Which gracefully guiding you down the psychological paths he chooses. I was constantly studying each panel hoping to see what was lurking in the shadows. When all was revealed in the end Phillips art matched the revision of Brubaker’s writing.

Even though FATALE is a little hard to follow it is detailed and intricate. With art that befits Brubaker’s literary genius. However, this graphic novels one down fall is its complexity which somewhat alienates the casual reader. Readers must stay as diligent and the characters themselves if they want to survive this novel. I give FATALE by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips an 8 ½ out of 10. Though I loved everything about it, it was just too hard to follow.


Have you read this or any other Ed Brubaker’s graphic novels? What are your thought’s on the horror comics? Comment below and follow me on twitter @pzenns