Clive Barker’s The Great And Secret Show Vol. 2

September 4, 2007 | Trades


Clive Barker’s The Great And Secret Show Vol. 2
Chris Ryall, Gabriel Rodriguez
IDW Publishing
$19.99 US (Paperback)
**** (out of five)

In the battle of good vs. evil the score is currently: Evil 1, Good 0.
The first half of this visual interpretation of horror master Clive Barker’s 1989 novel revealed “the great and secret show” going on behind the perceptions of the general public — a battle to possess something called “the Art” that would allow its possessor vast power and influence.
Two figures at the centre of this battle were Randolph Jaffe and Richard Fletcher, each of who had a brief experience with the Art and whose fight to control it ended in their “deaths” in the small town of Palomo Grove, Calif.
The two spirits each possessed a pair of local girls and made them get pregnant so that they’d have live agents to continue their work. The result is Fletcher’s son Howie and Jaffe’s twins Jo-Beth and Tommy-Ray.
The teen-aged Howie’s return to Palomo Grove, and subsequent love-at-first-sight experience with Jo-Beth, awakens the nefarious Jaffe and the overmatched Fletcher, each of who call out for their children to learn the truth behind their existence.
When the battle between the two sides finally hits, Tommy-Ray embraces his dark side and Fletcher is killed, but not before changing the lives of the people of Palomo Grove forever.
Now the role of saviour falls to the beautiful and brave Tesla as she goes in search of Fletcher’s legacy and finds herself face to face with an evil even greater than Jaffe.
Howie and Jo-Beth try to make peace (and love) in Palomo Grove as an army of beautiful dreams begins to amass and look to the teen boy as their general and Jaffe makes his move towards using the Art.
Barker’s epic tale isn’t for the meek and writer (and IDW publisher and editor-in-chief) Chris Ryall and artist Gabriel Rodriguez to an impressive job of realizing this tale in comic form.
Here’s hoping they’ll have the stones to tackle its complex sequel, Everville, and that Barker will get off his butt and finish the nearly 20-year-old trilogy so we can see a comic book version of that one, too.

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