Comic Review: “Blood & Gourd” Issue #1

August 12, 2015

Written by Capt McNeely

Georgia Division ZADF Twitter: @ZADF_ORG

 

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A bit about this book from it’s creators:

It’s Devil’s Night in Olympia, WA – and out at Henderson Farms, the festivities are reaching a crescendo. Young and old have gathered to pick their own pumpkin, drink hot apple cider, and partake in the usual pumpkin farm fare. However, something has awakened from deep within the fertile soil. After years of abuse and humiliation, the pumpkins…are ready to pick us. You can Beg! You can plead! You can scream! But these hell’s lanterns are lit only with the burning desire to watch. You. Die! 

Through crowd-funding and sheer determination, the Dead Peasant team has successfully conjured up one of the most bizarre, offbeat, and exciting comic books in years. With its roots in the classics and its vines in the new, Blood & Gourd is like EC Comics meets ’70s/’80s cult horror in 2015. Murderous pumpkins and assorted Halloween horrors bring to the fore an all new set of myths and monsters like you’ve never experienced before. The premier issue of Blood & Gourd features 48 full-color pages of premium, pulse-pounding, pumpkin pandemonium.

After reading the above text, I knew I just had to check this book out, and I can tell you that I am glad that I did. This comic is truly a masterpiece of modern horror. It is as American as homemade pumpkin pie and it’s recipe is chock-full of homages to the classic films that we love from our childhood. It is as if they took the best parts from the past and added in some flavor of their own. It’s kind of like how you would take Grandma’s beloved formula and sprinkle in some of your own spices to fit your tastes.

The comic begins with an innocuous story about Kitty Henderson who runs Henderson Farms, a local pumpkin patch, and her family business. Kitty’s mother has passed and her ailing father is wanting to sell the business out right and let Kitty get on with her life, as his is almost to an end. We are also introduced to Lori, an old friend of Kitty, who has come to the pumpkin patch for some family time with her rambunctious kids.

There is a record turn-out at the patch as this is their last year in business and they are going out with a big celebration culminating in family festivities and the “Ain’t That Somethin'” Pumpkin Contest. Friends, family, and present and former workers all fill the facilities to commemorate the occasion. However, they aren’t the only ones in attendance. The place is crawling with suits from Seminal Chemical Company, who purchased the property and have come for an inspection, and other creatures as we soon come to learn.

Like any corporate buyout things are not what they seem, and as always, the little guy always gets the raw end of the deal. It all takes a turn for the worse when a ruckus starts over the size of the prize winning pumpkin. Although, some are more distracted by the Pumpkin Queen and the display of her…um…pumpkins.  The festivities soon turn to fright when the pumpkins come to life and the seeds of evil that were planted begin to reap an unholy harvest. However, instead of run in fear, the crowds stop and cheer as they believe it is all an elaborate production put on for their pleasure.

The confusion doesn’t last for long and they quickly realize that these may be the last pumpkins that they ever pick. Some begin to fight off the powerful produce as the pumpkins turn people into pulp and do some creative carving of their own. Others try to take refuge, but instead find themselves entangled in the vines of deceit as they become trapped on the farm. Even the authorities can’t help those that the Gourdfather, King of the Jack-O-Lanterns and the creepiest Great Pumpkin you will ever encounter, has chosen to pluck from life.

This comic is action packed from start to finish with vivid panels that look like storyboards from horror’s finest B-movies. It has gore galore and enough campy humor to make it an instant cult classic. The ingeniously written dialogue is sure to win crowds over, just like a prize winning pumpkin. I also thoroughly enjoyed all the throwbacks to the films that we all know and love. All in all, this is one ripe book, ready for you to pick up today. Do yourself a favor and read this comic, then reread it, and see if you can spot all the references to the horror greats.

This comic was fully funded as part of a successful Kickstarter campaign. The 1st issue can be purchased at deadpeasant.net. It is also available at most comic book stores in WA and OR. Please check it out and follow them on Facebook and Twitter as well.

Another Kickstarter campaign is now up and running for Blood and Gourd #2: Escape from Henderson Farms with a few days left to go. If funded, this issue will be ready around Halloween. Go support this project here so that we can find out what happens to the survivors and what, if anything, can stop the pumpkins from taking all of us on a hayride to Hell. Not to mention, they have some pretty damn cool rewards for your patronage.

This amazing and innovative horror spectacular was brought to you by Dead Peasant, LLC which is 100% creator owned and operated. It was made possible by horror fans like you and the creative talents of the following individuals:

  • Jenz K. Lund & D.H. Shultis: Writers/Creators
  • Dave Acosta: Pencils (Chastity, Swords of Sorrow)
  • Juan Albaran: Inks: (Nightwing, Batgirl & Injustice: Year Two)
  • Fran Gamboa: Colors: (Battlestar Galactica, Grimm Tales of Terror)
  • Juan Antonio Ramirez: Cover art: (Six Million Dollar Man)
  • The Gurch!: Cover Art: (Gore Shriek)

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