Review: Postal #1

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Postal-1-Cover

Publisher: Image Comics
Writers: Bryan Hill, Matt Hawkins
Art: Isaac Goodhart
Colours: Betsy Gonia

Another week, another new number one from Image Comics. Does this one have the legs to make it out of the gate?

From the outset of Postal, it is clear that this is not set in an idyllic mid-western town. Known more for Yellowstone National Park and the Great Plains, the state of Wyoming has a dirty little secret called Eden. A town of 2,198 people, a town that is caught up in that Old Testament style of religion. Mob justice is the rule of law and it is acted out with extreme prejudice. It’s a town full of criminals and crime is not tolerated.

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One man stands apart from the mob. Our hero comes in the unlikely form of the local mail clerk. Mark may be the son of the Mayor but he is a target for ridicule due to having Asperger Syndrome. He is just a nice guy that is trying to be a good guy in a world that rejects him.

As events of Postal unfold, and we are given glimpses of the seedy underbelly of the town, it is Mark’s Asperger Syndrome which is the hook. I will admit to not being an expert on Asperger Syndrome and felt the need to familiarise myself after reading.

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It is an interesting take on the concept of a hero. Sure, we are used to our heroes being flawed and in that drama is created, but in this case the hero isn’t so much as flawed as he is too good. In the face of prejudice, Mark always tries to be the better man, showing tolerance and compassion in most cases. He is a stark contrast to the townspeople, a true white knight in a sea of scum.

The world that writers Bryan Hill and Matt Hawkins have created is intriguing, however, the narrative can be a little loose at times. Isaac Goodhart’s art is a not really to my tastes. His use of thick lines contrast against Betsy Gonia’s warm colour palette and it gives the page an uneven feel. It is not that it is bad, the artwork is detailed and sharp, it just wasn’t for me.

Overall, I would say that Postal #1 is an intriguing book but not one that grasps you hard and makes you want more. If you like your books to be a little left of centre with a bit of a Twin Peaks vibe then it’s maybe worth your time. If not, then you may be best passing it over.

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