Independent Scottish Comics round-up
New graphic novels from Stephen Sutherland & Garry McLauchlin, Iain Laurie and more
The Scottish comic scene isn’t all about Grant Morrison, Mark Millar and Frank Quitely (however much we love their work) as there’s plenty talent on offer from Scotland’s small press. Taking Flight (Laser Age Comics) is a superhero tale from writer Stephen Sutherland, the Glasgow setting giving the action a solid grounding in our world with its story of heroes hiding their powers due to the tabloid press and compensation culture. Garry McLauchlin’s art is also crisp, clean and pleasing on the eye.
Now we take a detour into a world marked Iain Laurie’s Mountain of Horror (Graphic Eye) which easily lives up to its title. Writer/illustrator Laurie’s work is your nightmares vomited onto the page in a jagged art style akin to the great Kevin O’Neill. You might crave a bit more structure but the unsettling nature is palpable.
Haunted Bowels is another anthology of oddness, from writer Craig Collins and a selection of artists (including the aforementioned Laurie, Dave Alexander and Curt Sibling). Not every gag works but the ones that do are satisfyingly weird as long as you like pitch-black sci-fi/fantasy-themed humour.
Finally AJ Smith gives new meaning to the phrase ‘fashion victim’ while Gill Hatcher presents a sort of ghost story set in the Kelvingrove Museum in Taxidermy Tales: a lovingly shambolic horror double bill, like a kooky indie take on Tales of the Unexpected.