Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Crabs' Fury! Sequential Smith Celebration!

Now that we have all had a chance to open our free Guy N. Smith E-Book (thank you to GNS and Ghostwriter by the way), I couldn't resist busting out my copy of CRABS' FURY. Way back when I first started writing the Crustacean Domination columns this was my grail. A comic book(!!) Crab book? Written by the man himself and drawn by Charlie Adlard?? A must have, and rarer than a Smith book that does not have a cheating husband or wife in it! Luckily, my pleas were heard and this has been released to the public in a new edition. Signed by GNS and Adlard no less! Now that I have it, I keep it in the place of honor that also stores the poster for the film in which I first touched the breast of a woman (that was not family in my family) resides.
Important stuff, a real time capsule my kids will either appreciate or have a good laugh at daddy and his bizarre obsessions.

Anyway, the book was created in 1992 and Adlard puts in a very good showing as the artist putting visuals to Guy's story-and an odd story it is. After the events of the Crab books we find that Cliff Davenport-our pipe smoking hero-is still vigilant and is prepping for the next Collision of Clickitey-Clicking Crabs and The Treat Known As Man. Good to know our hero still takes meetings with old Grizzly Grisedale even 5 years after the last Crusty Cancer ridden Crab has fallen. But behind every good hero is a more heroic woman, and the always supportive Pat has had enough. So, time for a holiday in Bermuda Cliff-pack yer bags! But...isn't there an issue with Bermuda just ready for the GNS treatment? Pat goes ahead while Cliff finishes up his business with Grisedale looking for a little sun and fun.
She never makes it. Bermuda Triangle!! AIEEE!! You should have thought this through my lovely lady Pat. Your husband battles giant crabs for a (presumably) living!

When Cliff arrives he is on the case and of course the clickitey-clickers aren't far behind. But this is where GNS pulls a smooth move on longtime crab fans. The story isn't particularly about the crabs at all. Enter the weird world of Dr. Milo and the HUMAN ZOMBIES!!! I can't help but hum the theme from Lucio Fulci's ZOMBI 2 as Cliff wanders up the stairs of the Haiti Police department...
*bom bom bom...eeeeeeeeeeeeooooooeeeeeeeeOOOOOOO*

What follows is a bunch of exciting pages as the legend of the Crabs expands and Charlie Adlard goes crazy with some hyper detailed looking Crustacean Crunch n' Munch. As always, Cliff prevails (and even helps a pretty native along Haitian girl along the way leading to a great final splash page), yet we know the Crabs are still out there and eager for more entrail spaghetti.

Crabs' Fury exceeded my expectations, and they were actually quite high. The plotting and pace is well done-no small feat at all since comics and prose are very different slime beasts to work in. Smith has a fantastic ability to work in almost any length, and is quite successful with this story. It doesn't overstay it's welcome, nor does it feel rushed. Charlie Adlard is the key to success, working the dramatic chases and Crab Crackings and the tense expressiveness of our hero learning his wife has been attacked (devoured?) by Crabs. While his work has evolved and matured over the years and made him quite a star of horror comics, there is lots of raw talent on show here, and even some style choices that are incredibly cool. Look for the splash pages that are simply covered in crab shell textures-they are a treat for the eye and the monster movie maven in me loves them for being so over the top. You just could not film a crab attack like the sacrifice sequence in Crabs' Fury!

If you love Guy N. Smith, are a Charlie Adlard fan or just like comics about Crabs that love the taste of steaming hot human guts-this is for you. It was incredibly rare, and with the current edition being signed and limited to 100 copies, it will now just be ultra-frakkin' rare. Don't miss out.

And...yes...I contributed an essay to this edition. Crustacean Domination is a reworking of my initial blog posts and is, I hope, something that shows the enthusiasm I have not only for the crabs, but Guy N. Smith and his amazing output. You won't learn anything that will assist you in your daily life, but you may just understand the true excitement one reader found when he first dipped his toe into a tub full of screaming flesh being ripped apart by barking mad CRAAAAABS!

Now, go and grab a copy from GUYNSMITH.com. You won't regret it.


Holger Haase said...

BTW I just awarded you the Premio Dardos: http://hammerandbeyond.blogspot.com/2009/03/hammer-and-beyond-receives-premio.html
Good work!!!

Anonymous said...

Excellent writing, as always, David. :)