by Gary Spencer Milldige
Imagine, if you will, a cross between the Archers and Twin Peaks; an everyday tale of normal English village life with healthy lashings of sinister masonic conspiracy, UFO cult strangeness, amazonian indian mysticism and brutal multiple killings. With me so far? Doesn’t it sound fucking ace? Now imagine that this gloriously warped tale is illustrated with some of the most beautiful, stylish and evocative artwork being produced in Britain right now; a combination of bold, blocky line art and layered ink washes that makes the strangeness of the events it depicts all the more unsettling for grounding it in a reality of near-documentary authenticity. Okay, you still with me? God, I’m excited just describing it. Don’t you want to read this comic RIGHT NOW??? Of course you do. Right. Now imagine that you have to wait, on average, an ENTIRE FUCKING YEAR between instalments of this thing.I mean to say, what? If the Archers tried that I don’t think it’d go down too well. And, to be fair, about as much happens in a single issue of Strangehaven as in one 15-minute episode of Radio 4’s longest-running shit-arsed dull yokel soap. (The parallels don’t end there, in fact; for all his vivid imagination and astonishing artistic skill, writer / artist Millidge has a flair for stilted, prosaic dialogue that would be right at home amongst Ambridge’s denizens. Shit, this guy could dialogue for Emmerdale).
I’m torn as to whether I should recommend reading ‘Strangehaven’. On the one hand, it will condemn you to a lifetime of addiction, unfulfilled yearning and waiting… endlessly, endlessly waiting….On the other hand, it seriously is one of the best-looking things I have ever seen. On balance, I think I would have to say everyone should go and buy it so as to support such a rare and individual artist, so he can stop having to get other jobs to support himself and his family, and can get on with the important business of telling his bizarre, engrossing and utterly unique tale.
www.millidge.com - the website