The Casebook of Elijah Snugs #3
Don’t be alarmed at the condition of that cover; my postman doesn’t seem to care for comics. If you can’t tell that there’s anything odd about that cover scan, please ignore these two sentences or pretend that they were just a figment of your imagination. Oh hi there! This issue nicely wraps up this particular Elijah Snugs mystery, but as pretty much any aspect of the book would be considered a spoiler, I’m at a bit of a loss. I should mention that I love in comics/movies/anything where a detective who is clearly smarter than the police officer gets sarcastic with them, because that has a tendency to take me right out of the story. One smart-ass remark from Sherlock Holmes or just about anybody would result in that person getting beaten, either during the conversation or later on when there would be less suspicion. Or am I just too cynical about police officers? In most cases, yes. Anyway, the last issue ended with Winston finding the missing egg that was at the heart of this case, and getting caught holding the egg by said police officer in a seemingly compromising position. Then Elijah Snugs comes into the picture, and we get to learn what has really been happening over the last couple of issues. I thought it was all tied up rather neatly, although I don’t know if it was possible for the reader to figure out the identity of the thief before the detective. That’s not a requirement, but it’s always satisfying to follow the clues and come to the solution before the detective. Or maybe my memory is just hazy about this being set up earlier on and this is all bunk. Either way this turned out to be a pretty solid mystery, with another one starting off with the next issue. Oh, and the extra story in the back is a recipe for what seems like some pretty delicious cookies, so even if you disagree with me completely on the content at least you’ll be able to make cookies after you read this.
The Casebook of Elijah Snugs #2
I’m just going to offer a little tip to Sal, and everybody else who makes comics while I’m at it: it’s not a good idea to use (basically) your final page as the cover to your comic. Generally speaking I’m awfully careful about spoilers, but when the big reveal is on the cover, what exactly would I be spoiling? Anyway, this comic is much improved over the last issue, with more time for the characters to breathe, more dialogue to get a better sense of these characters and more suspects being thrown into the mix (a requirement for a good mystery). The lights going out at the end of the last issue is dealt with quickly here (turns out that big old houses sometimes have rolling blackouts, so not so nefarious after all), then we get a lengthy conversation over muffins dealing with Firenza’s missing egg, her mistrust of her servants and the introduction of a shady detective. This detective has something of a feud going with Snugs, and it’s good to see a little bit of the history between them. The next issue promises to wrap up this story, and I’m a lot more intrigued now than I was after the first one. It’s worth a look if you like all-ages mysteries, unless you have some kind of aversion to talking animal stories, which would be weird.
The Casebook of Elijah Snugs #1
Would you trust a detective who didn’t wear pants who also had a pig for a sidekick? I guess it’s not a fair question to ask, seeing as how this is set in a world where every creature is some form of talking animal, but then why is the guy bothering to wear a trenchcoat and hat? I’m reading too much into this already. This is a fairly basic mystery story involving our hero and a mysterious missing egg. The security system had recently been updated and the only person with access to it other than the owner was the butler, but the owner insists that he couldn’t possibly have taken it. This is very much an all ages comic, but the dialogue isn’t so dumb that you feel silly reading it as an adult. So far it’s also taking itself very seriously for such a fundamentally silly concept, but that’s just my personal preferences in such things shining through. We got a good introduction for the main character (although the pig could still use a little fleshing out), a clear idea of what’s to come and a blessed absence of typos (always a welcome sign in first issues). This could go either way for me, as it may end up too cutesy for me to enjoy, but there were also a few funny bits that seemed to suggest that that might not be the case. My gut says I might not care for this after a few issues, but my gut is pretty damned stupid on a lot of things. And don’t go feeling all high and mighty because your gut is always right, because that’s nonsense. Remember that one person you dated right out of college? Remember how you were so sure about that person? Yeah, that was your gut being a moron. Ahem, I seem to have gotten off track. Sal also throws in a brief two page strip with a decent punchline, so there’s at least a little bit of variety. To sum up I mostly liked the art (that creeped out pig on the last page was fantastic), the writing was maybe too earnest for my taste (but that may be because I’m a jerk), and there seem to be intriguing places this story could go. Luckily Sal sent along the next issue too, so I won’t be left in suspense about it for much longer. And hey, neither will you! Unless this is only review you’ll ever read here, which would be odd, but I’m not the boss of you. $5