Published on January 14th, 2015 | by JCDoyle


Shutter #8 – Review

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Warning: Here be spoilers, from the start, it’s unavoidable I’m afraid. If you read the last issue then you know what a massive cliffhanger it was and there is only one question on your lips…

But before that, and to give those who don’t want to know what happens a chance to leave now, he’s a funny, feel good little comic strip that starts this latest issue:

shutter 8 insert

Okay, not so cheery. Don’t worry, there are some moments in this issue to lift your spirits, some but not many.

First up, Kate isn’t dead. However, she’s not about to have a good day. As she is taken on a tour of her sisters house a whole number of home truths start to come out, starting but not ending with the number of ‘forgotten’ brothers and sisters Kate never knew existed. Kalliyan, the stabbing sister, turns out to be less of a villain then first portrayed as she tells Kate about how cruel her father really was even though she has nothing but good memories of him. Kalliyan wants Kate to remember the truth and she promises that she will be shocked by what she has forgotten.

Meanwhile Chris has integrated into his new surrounds very well, seeming to accept the massive family that he previously knew nothing about. But while he is playing with his new brothers and sisters, he’s also trying to find a way to help the Alarm Clock Cat (who was never given a name by Kate) who is wallowing without a head in a dingy little room.

shutter 8 insert 2

The opening pages this issue are wonderful. They say so much about this comics run so far. The use of comic strip homages, manipulated to tell the history of one of the central characters, is inspired, hysterical, clever and above all entertaining. The creators have a flair for telling their story in a post modern way: in the same way Quentin Tarantino uses cinema references to create his movie scripts, Keatinge and Del Duca draw on the history of comic art to present their narrative. And why not? Especially since this approach fits the narrative of this comic, it is after all a story about stories and the characters that inhabit them.

There is a wealth of characters, and none of them are as straight forward as they seem. Just as Kate is discovering that everything she thought to be true is a lie, the reader is learning that not everything, or everyone, is at it seems. This issue especially makes you question everything you’ve read in previous issues. Just what was Kate doing before the opening scene of issue one? Was that in fact the start of her current persona?

As we progress through the unfurling narrative, the walls of the fantasy that Kate has been living are breaking down and sometime soon some big questions are going to be asked. And if there is one thing I’ve learnt about this comic, the answers aren’t going to be straight forward.

This comic is full of twists and tragedy and who would have thought that the Alarm Clock Cat would become such an emotionally charged central character?  Here’s hoping he gets a name soon, something worthy of his position. Maybe his naming will forge his destiny and change his world. Anything is possible.


Title: Shutter

Publisher: Image Comics

Writer: Joe Keatinge

Artist: Leila Del Duca

Colours: Owen Gieni

Letterer: John Workman



Lover of comics and Art and Sci-Fi in multiple media. Currently teaching my kids the ways of the Geek (while protecting my first editions)

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